Whether a deceased person leaves a valid Florida Will or not, their possessions must go somewhere, usually through probate. During a probate proceeding, a personal representative will be appointed to settle the decedent’s affairs and dispose of their estate assets. That sounds simple on paper, but the personal representative often has a huge job ahead of them. This is especially true when the estate includes unusual estate assets.
The personal representative of the estate:
At all times, the personal representative should act in the best interests of the estate.
Some assets lose value due to depreciation or because they are not in use. It’s the personal representative’s responsibility to address problems with wasting assets.
Some assets are difficult to manage because of Florida’s humid subtropical climate. Perishable assets literally may perish without the right care.
The personal representative will safeguard assets as much as possible. Occasionally, the cost to maintain an asset may be detrimental to the estate itself. Then, the personal representative has a tough decision to make: continue maintaining the asset or sell it.
Many of the assets that fall into the “perishable” or “wasting” category may also be difficult to appraise or transfer. This puts the personal representative in an especially sticky situation. If not managed correctly, the assets may perish or waste, but illiquid assets may hold up administration.
Keep in mind, too, that the appraised value of the assets is needed to calculate estate taxes.
John Mangan is an experienced Florida estate planning attorney who has been board certified in Wills, Trusts & Estates by the Florida Bar. At the Law Offices of John Mangan, P.A., we have assisted many clients in developing comprehensive estate plans that meet their needs. Call us at 772-324-9050 to set up an appointment or use our convenient Contact Form.