When an estate goes through the process of probate, a personal representative is needed in order to manage the transfer of assets. Probate can be a very complex procedure and it can take many months. Therefore, the personal representative needs to be a trusted person who can manage all the details.
A personal representative is also commonly known as an executor of the estate, or an administrator of the estate. If you are planning your estate, it is important that you understand how the role of personal representative works and what criteria there is.
Who cannot become a personal representative?
If a person is a minor, they are not eligible to become a personal representative. In addition, a person who has been charged with a felony in the past cannot serve as a personal representative.
What happens when the choice of personal representative is contested?
If a person is a beneficiary of the will, they have the ability to contest the choice of personal representative if they choose to. If an heir is not mentioned as a beneficiary, they can also decide to contest the choice. Only a judge can make a final decision based on the choice of personal representative, however.
What happens when a will has not been made?
If a will has not been made, a personal representative needs to be chosen to process the estate. This will usually be the surviving spouse, surviving child, or the sibling of the deceased person.