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You discover you are a beneficiary to a will: Now what do you do?

On Behalf of | Jun 4, 2020 | Firm News

While mourning the loss of a loved one, you are bequeathed money in a will.  How do you go about getting it? It might be trickier than simply asking for it. Below are a few details you need to keep in mind while starting the process of collecting this money awarded to you.

Who’s manages the will?

Most wills name a family member or friend as the executor. An executor is responsible for making sure your loved one’s last wishes are followed through as instructed. That includes appropriately dispersing funds given to persons listed in the will. Knowing this, you will want to approach the executor respectfully when asking them about the last will or testament.

You may require legal counsel

When it comes to dealing with collecting funds from a will, you will likely wish to consult with an attorney concerning any questions concerning the process.

Estate debts must be paid first

If your loved one has any outstanding debts,  the estate must pay those debts first before you can collect money from the estate.

Taxes, and what to do about them

While you may not have to pay any taxes upon your inheritance, the federal government will tax you on the earnings from your inheritance (such as interest earned). It is essential to understand this before collecting the proceeds.

You got your money, now what do you do with it?

It can be a thrilling and exciting moment to collect money from a will, but how and what you do with it can make all the difference. To help you spend wisely and make that money work for you, invest it, save it, and think about paying off any outstanding debts of your own.

Collecting funds from a will  I not always straightforward. If you are patient and work with the executor and an estate attorney, you likely will be able to avoid additional financial stress.


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