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214-691-3411
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Dallas Executor Fee Claims Attorneys

Serving as the executor of an estate is time-consuming and often challenging. If you are an executor, you should be aware that you are entitled to compensation for carrying out the duties that are assigned to you. This compensation will come directly from the estate.

You should also know that there are certain costs that you may need to pay out-of-pocket, which will then be reimbursed through the estate.

If you are the executor of somebody’s estate, the experienced Dallas estate litigation attorneys at Staubus and Randall can help you carry out your duties and obligations. Our legal team can also help you calculate and claim your executor fees and recover the expenses you incurred during the probate process. Contact us today at 214-691-3411 to schedule a consultation with a qualified executor fee claims lawyer.

last will

What Duties Does an Executor Have in Texas?

An executor is responsible for carrying out duties relating to administering, distributing, and wrapping up a decedent’s estate. Texas law requires that an executor fulfill the following tasks:

  • Locate and notify beneficiaries named in the will
  • Notify the decedent’s creditors
  • Identify, collect, and take an inventory of all the decedent’s assets
  • Take steps to maintain and protect those assets
  • Pay the decedent’s outstanding debts
  • If appropriate, bring a wrongful death suit
  • Complete pending legal action the decedent was involved in
  • Prepare and file taxes
  • Account for assets and payments made by the estate
  • Distribute these assets as outlined in the will

What Are the Executor Fees in Texas?

According to the Texas Estates Code, an executor’s fee is up to five percent of the total financial transactions of the estate. If the executor settles an estate worth $300,000, for example, they are entitled to up to $15,000 in executor fees if they have carried out their duties correctly and honestly.

The amount on which this calculation is based excludes certain assets, such as any amount in cash that the decedent owed at the time of death, as well as any cash the decedent held in a checking or savings account. The amount also excludes life insurance proceeds and assets with named beneficiaries.

It is important to note, however, that this five percent limit is a state law that is applicable if there was no mention of compensation in the decedent’s will or if there was no will at all. When creating the will, a testator may agree on their own fee with their chosen executor if they wish. The courts will uphold any amount set forth in a legally valid will.

Furthermore, if the executor feels that the five percent amount is insufficient for the amount of work they have put into administering and distributing the estate, they may be eligible to petition the probate court for a more substantial fee. Contact us today.

Can the Courts Deny Executor Fees?

Probate courts may deny compensation to the executor if the executor has not performed their duties in a prudent and honest manner. The same may happen if the executor is relieved of their duties prematurely.

Can an Executor Choose to Waive Their Fees?

An executor may elect to forfeit their fee at any time. In fact, this can be a good idea if the executor is also a beneficiary of the estate. Waiving executor fees can be a way of ensuring that they avoid any potential conflicts of interest.

What Transactions May an Executor Be Reimbursed For?

Many of the tasks that an executor must carry out can cost money. They may choose to pay for these things out of their own pocket and receive reimbursement later. Alternatively, they may use estate assets to pay these costs. It is important to have clarity about what you may pay for through the estate without conflicting with your fiduciary duties.

The Texas Estates Code outlines three categories under which you may be reimbursed or use estate funds:

  • Maintaining the Estate – You are welcome to use estate assets or to be reimbursed from the estate for costs associated with maintaining assets in the estate. For example, you may want to pay to keep insurance on the house in order to maintain the value of the property. Using estate funds to keep harm from coming to the property is a fulfillment of your fiduciary duties.
  • Collecting Assets – In many cases, it can be costly to find and collect assets that are owned by the estate. Expenses such as shipping, travel, and accommodation costs associated with the collection of assets count as reimbursable expenses for the executor.
  • Asset Recovery – The final category under which expenses may be reimbursed through the estate are costs associated with attempting to recover estate assets or claims held by the estate. If the estate has claims that the executor must try to recover, the executor is eligible to be reimbursed for expenses related to that recovery. In some cases, however, it is more prudent to avoid recovering assets. This is especially the case if you would end up spending more money than the claim is actually worth when you are attempting to recover it.

When you are engaging in business relating to the above categories, it is important that you keep detailed records of your expenses so that you can demonstrate what the estate owes you in addition to your executor fees.

lawyer and client

Contact an Experienced Dallas Executory Fee Claims Attorney

Fulfilling the duties of an executor is far from straightforward. It takes a lot of time and energy, and it can sometimes even be costly. Fortunately, you do not have to be alone in carrying out your duties as an executor. The experienced Dallas executor fee claims attorneys of Staubus and Randall are here to assist you with the legal complications, to help you meet filing deadlines, and ensure that you receive a fair amount of compensation for the difficult and often emotionally challenging work that your role requires.

Contact a member of our knowledgeable legal team today for a confidential consultation. Call us now at 214-691-3411, and we will talk you through your options.

The Firm

The attorneys at Staubus and Randall have over 100 years of combined experience in estate planning, probate, and litigation. We have the knowledge and skills to tackle complex legal issues, such as guardianships, will contests, fiduciary litigation, and trust litigation. We can also handle routine matters, such as estate administration, probating wills, heirship determinations, and other probate court matters.

Staubus and Randall received a preeminent AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell, which is the highest rating possible from a peer-rated legal service. This rating recognizes our hard work, dedication, and the case results we’re able to achieve.

Staubus & Randall Team

What Our Clients Say

"I recently had the occasion to hire Mr. Staubus for a hotly contested Guardianship matter. Mr. Staubus brought a rare combination of effectiveness, reasonableness and understanding of the human element involved. Mr. Staubus handled all things in a calm, highly competent, effective and reasonable way. It could not have been as easy as he made it seem. He's a credit to the Bar."

Jody

"Before retaining the guidance of the Staubus & Randall firm, I was at my wit's end trying to close an uncle's estate as a co-executor. In addition to dealing with difficult heirs, I had other pressing business issues coming up immediately on estate land in the middle of the Eagleford Shale including dealings with pipeline, seismic, oil & gas, and construction companies. The local bank also refused to give me access to information relating to the estate. This quickly became the most stressful and desperate time in my life...and then I found Joseph Legere who truly became my guardian angel. He was able to get all issues resolved efficiently and the estate fully closed. His professionalism, immense legal knowledge on a wide variety of topics, and amazing communication skills took the burdens off of me and quickly got closure. I am forever indebted to this firm for giving me my life back."

Martha

"Without exception, the legal service, professional attitude, prompt communication of your firm and your legal knowledge is second to none. I only wish I had an attorney here in Boston that could hold a candle to your experience and expertise. Working with you has been a pleasure, but even more, has made me believe that there are knowledgeable attorneys that do care about doing a good job. Thank you Keith! You may not truly understand how much of an impact you are having on peoples lives, but for me, you have helped change my life. As I begin making my dreams come true I can't help but remember none of this would be possible without you."

Joann

"Keith Staubus and Julie Blankenship and their team represented me in a jury trial in the probate court where the ownership of the business which I had worked hard to build was at stake. They successfully fought to preserve my business and my professional reputation, working masterfully to gain the support of the jury. I would not hesitate to hire them again in any bet-the-company litigation.”

Karen

"I have required legal representation twice in my life in two separate will contests. Both times I sought assistance from Keith Staubus and Staubus/Randall. Their service, approach, and determination to obtain results exceeded the other attorneys in each case. Mr. Staubus has always come across as genuine while being direct. He gets the process done in a timely manner with results. I will certainly use him again when and if any new challenges arise.”

David

"After my husband's death, I was devastated by having to defend against a vicious dispute over my husband's estate. Julie Blankenship and Keith Staubus made me feel very comfortable in this distressing situation. They were very tough and did an excellent job for me in obtaining a summary judgment in my favor without a full jury trial. I was glad to have them and Diane Walker in my corner to help me achieve an excellent result - I won! If I ever had to go back to probate court, I would hire them again.” - (will and trust construction case)

Flo

"If you need intervention for someone you love but don't know where to turn or who to turn to, Julie Blankenship and Keith Staubus helped me through the most difficult and stressful time in my life with a much loved family member. I now believe that good will triumph over evil. They fought for what was right, and good prevailed." (contested guardianship and will contest)

Janet

"As a professional money manager, I have used Ryan Randall's estate planning services both personally and for my clients. Ryan has exhibited three critical attributes in his work with me: (1) high intellectual capacity, (2) exceptional thoroughness, and (3) a total commitment to integrity. In today's litigious world, it can be quite costly not to "get things done right.” An added bonus to us was that we found one of the nicest people we could imagine.”

John

"I was represented by Keith Staubus as an income beneficiary in a lawsuit with the trustee of a family trust. Utilizing the expertise of a forensic accountant and his own trust expertise, Keith was able to negotiate a judicial modification of the trust providing for the buyout of my income interest for a substantial lump sum payment out of the trust, resulting in a win-win situation for all of the parties. I highly recommend Staubus/Randall for any trust disputes and trust modification actions."

Kathy

"I have been a wealth management specialist and retirement plan consultant with the Dallas/Fort Worth financial community for over 20 years. I have engaged Ryan Randall to work with a number of my best clients over the years, including business owners, professionals and families. My clients always appreciate Ryan’s straightforward approach to estate planning, asset protection planning and business succession planning. He makes even the most sophisticated estate planning strategies understandable."

Larry

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