A sibling has petitioned to Administer our recently deceased Mom's Estate (no one was named in the will), but she is also a beneficiary. In research I found that "a personal representative shall receive compensation based on the value of the estate..." Of course her attorney will receive the statutory compensation fees from the estate. But if the representative/administrator of the estate means the same, it would appear that one family member would be allowed to excessively profit from the estate beyond the other sibling heirs?
Some states have replaced the term “executor” with “personal representative” so the terms are often used interchangeably. An administrator or administratrix is the person appointed by the probate court to administer the estate of a person who has died without a will (intestate). Payment for these duties have no bearing on an inheritance the person might also receive as a beneficiary.
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The Administrator, Personal Representative, Executor (they all mean the same thing.) is entitled to a fee, and in my experience, they earn it.
Personal representative is the generic all purpose term.
Administrator is a person appointed by the court. It means there is no will or the persons nominated executor in the will cannot or will not do the job.
Executor is a person appointed by the court to execute the will.
The Executor or Administrator can be paid the same amount as the attorney.
Many waive the fee because it turns what is usually a non-taxable inheritance into taxable income. If estate taxes will have to be paid, the situation changes because the estate tax rate is higher than the highest income tax rate.
When the person gives you money, the person has an attorney and the attorney has a client, but not until then. Inspired by words of Abraham Lincoln
What the beneficiary receives as beneficiary is separate from the compensation the beneficiary that serves as the administrator of the estate or executor of the will receives for the work involved in administering an estate. It would not be fair for a beneficiary to be expected to do the work for free just because he/she also inherits. While a personal representative that also takes as a beneficiary or heir can choose to do the work for free or for less than the statutory compensation, the personal representative is under no obligation to work for less.
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