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Counseling Clients through Estate Administration: A Practical Toolkit for Attorneys


Created on December 18, 2020





Many lawyers may think of an estate or trust in terms of "estate planning," however, not all estate situations can be answered by an erudite knowledge of tax planning or court procedure. During the administration of a decedent's estate, it is common for clients to look to their legal counsel for answers to more mundane, immediate, and tangible matters. Clients could ask for what they perceive to be "legal advice" in areas where attorneys might not have experienced such as: whether to open the decedent's mail, how long the administration process ought to take, how to handle family dynamics, or what communications heirs should expect from the executor. This course will give the unique perspective of what occurs during the administration of an estate, as opposed to the common focus on what was intended by an estate plan. It will give lawyers practical tools to add value to their clients during what is frequently an emotional and trying time.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Identify common powers of the Personal Representative prior to formal court qualification
  2. Discuss ways that the grieving process can affect the estate administration
  3. Review the general arc and specific milestones of an estate administration
  4. Avoid "estate planning" mistakes that can affect the ultimate disposition of an estate

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