Garton & Harris

Estate administration: Why it takes so long to get an inheritance

Getting an inheritance can take some time. One of the last jobs an executor is likely to do during estate administration in British Columbia is to disseminate inheritance funds. There are many things to be done with an estate before it can be closed, the first of which is taking inventory of the decedent's assets and debts. Estate planning documents must be located and must be in order before anything else can happen.

All the assets have to be evaluated, and things can get slowed down if the estate has to go through probate. Those assets have to pay any debts the decedent may have owed. These debts include such things as credit cards, outstanding bills, utilities, etc. A final tax must be filed, and taxes must be paid if the decedent owed them. 

The time it takes for all this to transpire isn't written in stone, with a lot depending on each individual estate. If there are several beneficiaries, it may take longer for each to receive what he or she is due. An estate can be settled in a few months or it could actually take years. 

Estate administration is a time-consuming process, and a British Columbia lawyer's knowledge and experience could prove invaluable in the process. A lawyer will be able to advise executors in obtaining court approval of estate administration and to help with any challenges an executor faces. Estate administration can be confusing and overwhelming. A lawyer's guidance may make the process much less taxing on an executor and other family members of the decedent.

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