Estate Administration

Westfield Estate Administration Attorney

Guiding New Jersey families through estate administration

Though most of us would rather avoid discussing the end of one’s life, it is a reality for all of us. Estate planning is an extremely important step all of us should consider. Estate planning allows for a peace of mind that your vision of the future will come to fruition. If you have goals for your estate and assets, estate planning is the way to achieve them. Through a will, you can dictate how your estate will function after your passing. Without a will, the decision about how to distribute assets are in the hands of the court. If you successfully make a will, there are a few steps your executor must take to close the estate and follow your wishes, including:

  • Bringing a will to probate
  • Gathering assets
  • Guiding their distribution

If you are considering taking the first step towards a secured vision of the future through estate planning, please contact Joseph Gachko, Attorney at Law. Attorney Gachko has over 30 years of experience guiding clients through estate planning. For compassionate counsel regarding probate and estate administration, contact Joseph Gachko, Esq. for a consultation.


Once a person passes, the first step of the estate administration process is to offer a will for probate at the Surrogate’s Court. If the will is accepted for probate, it is called a testate estate. Probate functions to ensure that the will is valid and to determine the executor. In turn, the executor will present the will to the court. In order for the executor to have the power to carry out your wishes, the court will issue Letters of Testamentary.

The executor gathers assets and pays liabilities

After given the authority to follow the direction of the estate, the executor will collect assets, determine their value, and pay any debts or liabilities that are outstanding. Regarding paying debts and liabilities, this may include paying overdue taxes and/or filing any necessary tax returns.

Closing the estate

Following the direction of the will, the executor will provide a copy of the will to the benefactors and make the distribution as provided in the will. At this point, a Release and Refunding Bond should be signed before any assets are distributed. A Release and Refunding Bond protects the executor in the event of any debts or unknown overdue taxes surfacing after distribution. Once the executor files the necessary documents with the Surrogate’s Court, the accounting and the Release and Refunding Bond will close the estate.

Contact a Union County attorney to guide you through estate administration

The executor’s responsibilities go far beyond the ones listed here. In many circumstances, an executor of a will shall retain representation that can effectively guide them through the process and their responsibilities. Whether you are the one who wants a will for your estate or an executor who needs guidance through the process, contact an attorney with estate administration experience. Joseph Gachko, Esq. is honored to serve the greater New Jersey area. If you are in need of quality, compassionate, and effective legal services, contact Joseph Gachko, Attorney at Law.