The Executor must inform the decedent's creditors that the decedent has died. If the decedent's probate assets are sufficient to pay the creditors, the Executor will pay them from the estate. However, if the probate assets are insufficient, the Executor may need to obtain court approval to determine which creditors should be paid. If there are any assets left after the creditors have been paid, those assets are distributed according to the Will.
If there is no Will, the decedent is said to have died intestate. In which case, Massachusetts statutes dictate the parties who are the "default" beneficiaries. The administrator will distribute the assets of the decedent to these parties.
Additionally, if the estate is owed any money, the executor may need to bring a lawsuit in order to collect it. Alternatively, if the will is contested, or if there is any other dispute over how to distribute the estate assets, the Executor may have to "defend" the will in a probate proceeding.
Attorney Tobin can assist you in all complex facets of the distribution process.
Contact us to arrange a free consultation with Attorney Adam J. Tobin