If two people are co-executors of an estate, Do they both need to agree on everything and both sign everything?

Asked over 4 years ago - Downingtown, PA

My nephew (located in California) and I are named co-executors of my in-laws' (They reside in NJ) estate. Will my nephew and I be keeping FedEX in business overnighting papers cross-country in order to have both signatures on everything that we attempt to do to close the estate?

Attorney answers (2)

  1. Steven J. Fromm

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . If you really get along with each other, perhaps one of you could resign, but be kept up to date on all filings. But as always, there are risks involved by the resigning party. Otherwise you must continue the cumbersome arrangement. However, if you have an attorney who will copy both parties then a resignation may work.

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    Mr. Fromm is licensed to practice law in PA with offices in Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties. He can be reached at 215-735-2336 or at the email address listed below. He has received a 9.7 rating from AVVO and recently was featured as a 5Star Wealth Manager in the Philadelphia Magazine, November 2009 issue on page 123.
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  2. James P. Frederick

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . You have the practical problem enjoyed by most co-executors. It is the one reason why I am sometimes hesitant to appoint more than one person. In almost all cases, both of you would need to sign, in order to do any administrative task. You can do this through the regular mail, if you like.

    It is usually not that big of a deal, but can be an inconvenience.

    Best of luck to you!

    James Frederick

    It is very unlikely there would be any taxes owed. There is a step up in basis on assets when someone passes away, to the fair market value, as of the date of death. So the only time there would likely be a tax would be if you held onto the property for some time and it appreciated, after the death. That does not sound like your case.

    Best of luck to you!

    James Frederick

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    LEGAL DISCLAIMER
    Mr. Frederick is licensed to practice law in the State of Michigan and has offices in Wayne and Ingham Counties. My practice is focused in the areas of estate planning and probate administration.
    I am ethically required to state that the above answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. These responses should be considered general legal education and are intended to provide general information about the question asked. Frequently, the question does not include important facts that, if known, could significantly change the answer.
    Information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in the subject area in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state.

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