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Carrying Out Final Wishes

Making funeral arrangements is a part of estate administration

The executor of an estate has numerous duties, though many people may assume it is just a matter of probating the will and distributing the assets. While those are the two main tasks of estate administration in British Columbia, there are numerous sub-tasks and related duties, as well. For example, the executor may need to make many decisions concerning the funeral for the deceased.

Naturally, dealing with the funeral or memorial service will be one of the first tasks handled by the executor. How large a job this will be will depend on the degree to which the decedent pre-arranged his or her funeral. Information about a pre-arranged funeral may be contained within the will, which would greatly simplify the executor's task.

Should it turn out limited or no instructions were left regarding funeral arrangements, the task will fall to the executor. The logical first step is to contact a local funeral home. A funeral director may be of great assistance when trying to plan and organize the service and burial or cremation. Importantly, a funeral director can prepare and provide a death certificate, which will be a very useful document for accessing assets. Payment can be made by the executor from the estate.

In the absence of any clear directions, it may be up to the executor to make certain decisions. These might include choosing between burial or cremation, the nature and location of the service, and other details of the funeral. Consulting with the decedent's family may help, as they may be able to offer insight into what the decedent might have wanted. 

Dealing with the funeral may be one of the most emotionally challenging aspects of estate administration. It is a very important one, however, as it often provides a measure of comfort and closure for loved ones. For assistance with all aspects of estate administration in British Columbia, an executor can turn to a dedicated and compassionate estate lawyer.

Source:, "Settling An Estate", Accessed on March 13, 2017

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Marie-Louise Fast Marie-Louise Fast Lawyer & Notary Lawyer Profile

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