When settling a probated will, is the executor responsible for for paying the probate attorney out their own money

Asked over 1 year ago - Hartford, CT

or does the payment come out of the estate

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Joseph Michael Pankowski Jr

    Contributor Level 18

    6

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Any estate fees and expenses, including those of the estate attorney, should come out of the estate, not out of your own pocket. With that said, when an estate is illiquid, the attorney and the executor may agree that the executor will be personally liable for attorney's fees rather than having the executor sell off estate assets. Such an agreement (which is typically done when the executor is the sole beneficiary) must be set forth in writing and should be done at the beginning of the estate administration. Good luck to you.

    This information is presented as a public service. It should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor... more
  2. Paul A. Smolinski

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

    6

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . In the end, attorney's and other professional fees required to administer the estate are paid for with estate assets. However, in many instances, the funds are not available at the outset and most attorneys will not commence working without a retainer. In those instances, the Executor (or other interested party) may "front" the money and then be repaid with estate funds when possible.

    In case you were wondering. The reason that this is an estate expense is because the attorney while working WITH the Executor is working FOR the Estate. Since the attorney's services benefit all of the Legatees under the Will.

    Best Wishes!

    Legal Disclaimer: Paul A. Smolinski is licensed to practice law in the State of Illinois only, and as such, his... more
  3. Steven M Zelinger

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . The other attorneys are correct - these are expenses of the estate. Think about it, why would any one agree to serve as executor (especially if they are not a beneficiary) if they had to pay their own money to do it?

    This is not legal advice nor intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information provided here is... more

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