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Five Important Tips For Choosing A Personal Representative For Your Tampa Will


Creating a will is one of the most important ways you can protect yourself and your loved ones. The first step in establishing one is choosing a personal representative. Our Tampa wills attorney explains their duties and offers five important tips for choosing the right person.

Duties Of A Personal Representative In Tampa Probate Court Proceedings

Your estate refers to any property and assets you possess, such as your home, vehicle, household furnishings, personal belongings, shares in business, money in bank accounts, investments, and other items. When someone passes away, before assets may be distributed among beneficiaries, your estate must pass through probate.

A will acts as your guide through Hillsborough County Probate Court proceedings. It conveys your final wishes and determines who inherits from your estate and how property is divided. A personal representative, otherwise referred to as an executor, represents you and protects your interests throughout the probate process. Their duties include:

  • Filing your will with the probate court;
  • Gathering all property and assets;
  • Locating and notifying all beneficiaries;
  • Providing notice to creditors and satisfying outstanding debts;
  • Filing a final tax return and attending to other matters required to close the estate.

How To Choose The Right Personal Representative For Your Tampa Will

Under the Florida Statutes, there are few requirements for being a personal representative other than being a resident of the state. Considering the serious nature of their duties, follow these tips when choosing the person right for you:

  1. Choose someone you can trust.

Personal representatives have a fiduciary duty. Pick someone you can trust to carry out your wishes and handle matters in a way you would have wanted.

  1. Choose someone who has the time, health, and energy to devote to the task.

Being a personal representative may involve repeated trips to the probate court. The person you select should be in good health, have appropriate transportation, and have the time and energy needed to devote to the task.

  1. Choose someone with the appropriate skills.

Many people choose their spouse, an adult child, or a close relative or friend to be their personal representative. However, consider whether they have experience in financial matters and can perform potentially complex tasks often required to settle an estate.

  1. Choose someone willing to act as your personal representative.

Speak to the person you are considering and make sure they are up to the task. If choosing a relative or close friend, consider whether probate will disrupt the grieving process.

  1. Make family members and friends aware of your choice.

Finally, make sure all family members, friends, or others who may be entitled to inherit from your estate are aware of your choice. This can avoid potential problems and legal battles later on.

Contact Our Tampa Wills Attorney Today

At Strategic Counsel Law Group, L.C., we can assist you in choosing a personal representative and other tasks required to create a will in Tampa. For trusted legal guidance, call or contact our office and request a consultation with our Tampa wills attorney today.




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