Georgia law provides a statutory rate of compensation if the fee is not stated in the will or agreed upon in a written agreement executed prior to the decedent's death.
Thus, you should first carefully review the will to ascertain whether or not the compensation of the executor/personal representative is specified in the Will. Unless you are a corporate executor, it's unlikely you had a written agreement with the decedent regarding fees.
If the will does not specify executor's compensation and there is no written agreement, O.C.G.A. 53-6-60(b) specifies compensation. The Executor is entitled under this default rule to 2.5% on all sums of money received by the personal representative (except for loans from the executor to the estate) and 2.5% on sums paid out for debts and distributrions to heirs/beneficiaires. The statute provides that the executor is entitled to "reasonable compensation" not to exceed 3% of appraised value for in-kind distributions of property. If seeking maximum compensation, you may wish to obtain the probate court's approval for the compensation on in-kind distributions.
The Executor is also entitled under the default rule, to 10% of the interest earned during the course of administration.
THIS COMMUNICATION DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP.
An Executor's compensation, if not set forth in the Will (or certain other written agreements), is governed by O.C.G.A. 53-6-60. Under this statute, the Executor is entitled to 2.5% of all cash or cash equivalents coming into the estate and 2.5% of all cash or cash equivalents going out of the estate, and 10% of all interest earned during the course of the estate administration.
With court approval, you may also receive a commission of up to three percent of property distributed in-kind. This court approval is very important, especially if there is any chance the beneficiaries will challenge the commission.
As a side note, remember this compensation is considered income for income tax purposes but inheritances are not. If you are also a beneficiary under the Will you should consider the income tax consequences before deciding how much to take as a commission.