May 25th, 2012, 07:22 PM
My 94 year-old aunt just died. Poor dear had a rough life. She lost her hearing completely quite a number of years ago. Her eyesight has been failing and she's had some falls. She lived alone but my aunt and my aunt's daughter looked in on her and helped out when needed since they live close by. Well, she fell and this time she seriously injured her head and just passed away. Guess who's the executor of her will. ME!!! My sister is the back-up. Looks like I'm heading back to the states pretty quickly, and wondering how the heck I'm going to manage this task under my living circumstances. I'm hoping my cousin will be interested in taking on the job especially since she's due to inherit the house. If she says no I'm stuck. Please don't tell me your nightmare stories of executorship. It'll only make me feel worse. If you have any advice other than to hide I'd be happy to hear what you have to say. Is it possible to do this job if I'm in California and the estate is in Pennsylvania? I certainly don't see how it will be possible from London. Pray that cousin Lisa says she'll do it.

Jean Sewing Machine
May 25th, 2012, 07:59 PM
Certain states would only let executorship be done by a resident of the state where the deceased person lived. My brother died in Virginia without a will. No one in our family was allowed to be executor, we had to have a trust bank take care of it. The problem is, they take a good chunk of the estate to do their work. But I don't know how we would have been able to do any of it from far away, because the gentleman who was in charge of our brother's case was out there at the house often, taking care of the sale of property, fixing up the house, selling cars, listing the house, etc, etc, etc. You may want to go that way to make sure everything is taken care of properly, even though you will have to pay for the service. All of this took time, over a year, so you will be involved in it for a long time. I was executor of my mother's estate, and it was a lot of work. And it took over a year to get everything finalized.

May 25th, 2012, 08:19 PM
Rebecca, I am sorry for your loss. Did you know you were to be the executor? I have no clue or advice. Praying for swift resolution to your dilemma.

K. McEuen
May 25th, 2012, 08:19 PM
The only thing I know to tell you is that the estate should pay for all costs that you incur as the executor, including air fare for you to get there.

May 25th, 2012, 08:24 PM
Thanks for the advice, Jean. Fortunately, the house is willed to my cousin so there's no worries with that. She had no car and no additional properties. I know she has a CD and probably some savings. My other aunt is so upset right now. She just saw the will and she isn't even mentioned. Since she lives close she took a lot of responsbility making sure my aunt's needs were met. So sad that she didn't bother to leave anything for the person who did the most for her in her final years. I think the reason is because the will was made out 10 years ago and she wasn't thinking about how much Lois would end up doing for her as the years passed. However, my uncle did a lot for her as well and even though he's gone now she left him nothing as well. Fortunately, her one daughter is to inherit the most, then one of her sons, then my sister and me. My sister and I were actually her only blood relatives. My uncle was adopted. It was a strange family. We'll just leave it at that.

May 25th, 2012, 09:37 PM
So sorry for your loss Rebecca! I'm praying that your executorship issue will be resolved in a way you can manage. Hugs, Barb

Divine Daisy
May 25th, 2012, 09:40 PM
~In my experiance if the will is straightforward.....and it sounds that it is, then your job shouldn't be too bad. Your biggest difficulty will be family politics. My best advice for that is to say.......'I know I know, but aunty made the will many years ago and these were her wishes. And I know that if she had had nothing, you would have still done all you did for her, you loved her and would have cared for her no matter what'. That should work, just keep repeating variations on that theme and dont get involved in details.

Other than that I won't give advice, probate laws vary so much is the states, if it was the UK I could help you and would be happy to. There will be lots of advice online, look it up and follow the guidelines, you will be fine. Just make sureas Karen said that you charge your expenses to the estate. You must not be out of pocket.

Once you have done the initial stuff (and I do recommend labels on items in the house if people are getting a momento) the rest can nearly always be done by post. Good luck and give me a call if you need to. PM me for my number


Sandy Navas
May 25th, 2012, 09:50 PM
Rebecca, I'm so sorry for your loss and even more sorry for the things you are going to be facing. Sending prayers.

May 25th, 2012, 10:55 PM
Rebecca I'm sorry for your loss. Please don't stress. Just keep telling yourself: Auntie wanted me to do this, I am simply carrying out her wishes. You are in my prayers.


May 25th, 2012, 11:27 PM
I hope that your stint as executrix goes well. I am sorry for the loss of your Aunt. She probably felt you would be the most level headed one to carry out her wishes.
I agree, the family politics are the worst part. Labels are a good thing if people are choosing items from the house.
It can go smoothly, really.
Good luck!

May 25th, 2012, 11:38 PM
I'm very sorry for your loss. I hope your time as executrix is short and that no one contests the will. Good luck!

May 26th, 2012, 12:07 AM
Rebecca, sorry to hear about your Aunt. I have no advice to give but know that you are in my thoughts.

May 26th, 2012, 04:13 AM
I am so sorry for your loss....wish you the best regarding the other business.

May 26th, 2012, 04:23 AM
So sorry for your loss. All you can do it what you can do. Am sure everything will work out fine.

May 26th, 2012, 05:55 AM
Thanks to everyone. You all are so sweet and supportive. I've done some research on-line and I'm feeling a bit better about the whole thing. I just need to be really prepared so when I get there I take care of everything that needs to be done in person before I leave. Since Mom just passed away in December, my sister and I should be aware of most items that would require attention. I'll let you know how things went when I get back to London. I should only be in the states for about a week. We have family coming over shortly after my return. I'm also scheduled for a trip to Ireland and Paris and touring around here with a girlfriend who's coming over mid-June. It's a busy time right now, but staying calm and working it day by day is the only path to follow at this point. I'm just so glad Aunt Adele is at rest. She was ready and wanting to die. Tired of living. I feel so good that she had no suffering in the end.

May 26th, 2012, 08:02 AM
Rebecca, sounds like you have everything under control. Have a safe trip.

May 26th, 2012, 10:17 AM
So sorry to hear the news about your aunt. Sending prayers that all will go smoothly and hugs so that you'll feel the love and support of us all.

May 26th, 2012, 10:33 AM
Sorry for your loss. Will send you prayers of strength.

May 26th, 2012, 11:25 AM
So sorry for your loss. Yes the family issues will probably be the worst. Just remind them these were her wishes and not what YOU are deciding, i.e. don't shoot the messenger!

May 26th, 2012, 08:45 PM
Rebecca, I am so sorry for your loss. I will pray for your duties to be easy and quick. I'm glad she did not suffer. Hugs, Love, and Prayers, Jan L.