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Where should you look for a Maryland testator’s hidden assets?

| Aug 23, 2019 | Probate

For many, it’s an honor for your friend to appoint you as the executor of their estate. Knowing what to do in your role likely doesn’t come naturally though. You’ll need to inventory of all their assets soon after you file the testator’s will with your local county probate court in Maryland. There are some tips that you can follow to identify all of a testator’s assets.

Some of the testator’s assets that are easy to identify and inventory are their home, car and any tangible items contained within them. You shouldn’t stop after you document some of their more obvious assets though. You should try to identify more obscure ones too.

You should sort through the testator’s documents to see if they have any stocks or bonds, old checking or savings accounts, prepaid funeral arrangements or insurance policies.

One way to hone in on whether the testator had a storage unit or life insurance policy is by looking at their most recent bank statements. If they had either one of these, then you’ll likely see monthly deductions taken for them. An itemized charge for home insurance will generally be on their mortgage payment receipt.

If you find blank checks or a debit card when going through a testator’s personal effects, then they may belong to an older account that still has money in it. They may also have safe deposit boxes at those same banks. You should follow up with them about this.

A testator that has stocks and bonds generally would have received quarterly statements for them. You should look to see if any of those can be found.

If you want to know whether they have prepaid their funeral, then you should consult the funeral home that previously handled either their spouse’s or their parents’ burials. In asking them, you may find that they prepaid for their funeral services or a cemetery spot.

The first time that you’re called upon to serve as someone’s personal representative can be nervewracking. You may wonder what all that you need to do in your newfound role.

Even if you’ve administered an estate before, you may still be uneasy about your responsibilities. A probate attorney in Frederick can provide you with guidance throughout the entire estate administration process to make sure that you perform all of your responsibilities.