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Murphys Law

425 W. Kennel Street

Dog Town, IL 60089
Phone: (847) 555-5555

May 1, 2017

Ms. Sarah Smith

1234 Main Street
Grayslake, IL 60030

Re: Estate administration

Dear Ms. Smith:

Losing a cherished loved one can be a difficult time. It also means taking on the responsibility as an
executor or trustee. After the funeral is complete, thought should be given to administering the

During our initial meeting, we will outline this process for you. The estate administration begins
with gathering necessary information. All the necessary documents may be unavailable until after
the estate is opened in court and the personal representative is given authority to act on behalf of the
estate. The documents and information to gather and bring with you are:

1. Original Last Will and Testament. This is the legal document that states how the assets and
estate will be distributed, and to carry out the provisions of the will.

2. Death certificates

3. Decedents family tree and heir information

4. Lists of names, addresses, contact information, birthdates and social security numbers for all
executors, trustees, beneficiaries and heirs

5. Copies of account statements brokerage, checking, savings, CDs, retirement, etc.

6. Copies of stock certificates and savings bonds

7. Safety deposit box information

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8. Beneficiary designation for life insurance, annuities and retirement accounts (IRA, 401(k),
pension, etc.)

9. Copies of latest deed for real estate

10. List of debts or creditors, if any.

The specific legal process that is required to make sure that the estate of the deceased person is
managed properly, is called probate. The personal representative of the will is then responsible for
managing all assets and property, and payment of any necessary tax or debt obligations on behalf of
the deceased person. After all debts are paid, the remaining property is distributed to heirs and

We are here to assist you with the probate process to make sure it will be executed accurately. The
personal representative will account for all the property, possessions, and assets to establish a
monetary value of the estate. Creditors will have a time frame when they can present any debt
acquired by the testator that needs to be paid. The probate process from start to end, generally spans
one year.

Initial estate administration includes:

Probate of the will
Qualification of you as personal representative
Preparation of all court inventories and accountings
Assistance and coordination in collection, appraising, administering, and distributing all
estate assets
Any matters relating to the interpretation of the provisions of the will and resolution
Serving as counsel to the personal representative
Publication of notice to creditors and mailing to known creditors

Thank you for the opportunity to provide you with these complex services on your vital estate matter.
Our firms experience can help navigate the network involved in handling your loved ones estate and
guardianship matter.


Attorney Patrick Murphy

PM / lmh

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