What is a fiduciary for an estate plan?

When an individual makes the decision to create their estate plan in Massachusetts, they will have to choose someone they trust to handle matters after they pass. A fiduciary, as defined by the American Bar Association, is “an individual or bank or trust company that acts for the benefit of another. Trustees, executors, and personal representatives are all fiduciaries.”

The fiduciary of an individual’s estate has a lot of very important responsibility after the decedent passes away. The fiduciary has a number of responsibilities, some of which include the following:

  • All outstanding debts and expenses are paid
  • All expenses that have been incurred during the administration of the estate must be paid
  • They should notify any creditors of the death and if there will be a delay in making payments while finances are situated
  • They must be sure to file the following tax returns, including:
    • Tax returns for the final income of the year the decedent passed away
    • Tax returns for a gift, if applicable
    • Any missed tax returns if the individual was sick the previous year and couldn’t file
    • Estate taxes
  • The fiduciary also has to make sure all beneficiaries receive their inheritances

If you have questions about the responsibilities of a fiduciary in Massachusetts, contact us today.

If you require compassionate and knowledgeable legal guidance for a matter of divorce, family or estate law, please contact the experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley today. Our firm proudly serves clients in Mansfield, Massachusetts and throughout Bristol County.