You may know for a fact that you are named as a beneficiary in someone’s will. For example, your parents may have made it clear to you that you are their sole beneficiary.
Just the same, there are times when you may be surprised to find that you’re someone’s beneficiary, such as after an extended family member passes on.
What if you’re unsure about your status as an heir? There are many ways to determine if you were named a beneficiary in a will:
- If you receive a copy: For example, the executor may decide who will receive copies of the will, such as beneficiaries and guardians. If you’re supplied with a copy, you can review it to better understand where you fit in.
- From the executor: The executor may not provide you with a copy of the will, but instead contact you to inform you of your inclusion. It’s at that point that you can work with the executor to decide what comes next.
It’s important to remember that wills are public record. Once it’s admitted to probate court, anyone has the legal right to visit the courthouse and request to view the will. You may also be able to make your request via phone or mail.
If you were named a beneficiary in a will, do your part to make the process as simple as possible on the executor and all others. Probate is complex on many fronts, but there are things you may be able to do help move things along.
As the process comes to an end, you’ll eventually receive the assets that were left behind to you by the deceased.