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Are Estate Executors Paid (And Who Pays Them)?

On Behalf of | Dec 9, 2021 | Probate

Maybe your parents or another family member asked you years ago if you would serve as their executor. Maybe a loved one who recently died didn’t name anyone at all, but your family thinks you’re the right person for the job.

You know that there will be many hours of work involved in handling the estate and going to probate court. Before you accept such a significant responsibility, you want to know if it will be worth the effort.

Do the executors of Arizona estates receive compensation for the work that they do? If so, who pays for the work that an executor performs?

State law establishes the right for executor compensation

In Arizona, the person who assumes the responsibility of managing someone’s estate can expect to receive appropriate compensation for their work. Exactly how much someone receives for serving as executor will depend on the arrangements they’ve made and the amount of work involved in the process.

Sometimes, they may have negotiated arrangements with their family member and already have a signed agreement about what payment they will receive. If not, the testator may have included instructions about compensating the executor in their estate plan.

If they did, the executor can ask the courts to uphold that arrangement, or they could potentially ask the courts to set it aside and award them reasonable compensation if the amount offered is inappropriately low or outdated. An executor does have the option of waiving their compensation if they are happy to perform the work without receiving pay for their time and energy.

Who pays for an executor’s work?

The compensation for an executor’s services will come from the assets in the estate. The compensation for the executor and the payment for any attorney representing the executor and the estate will usually take precedence over many other responsibilities for an estate.

Even if there won’t be enough assets left over after repaying debts or for family members to receive an inheritance, the executor should be able to receive appropriate compensation for their job in managing the assets and arranging the repayment of debts.

Knowing your rights as an executor managing the probate process can help you receive the compensation you deserve for your work.