When your parents made their estate plan they named you the executor because they wanted to provide for you and your siblings after they were gone. They also wanted to ensure that some of their more valuable items ended up in the right hands.
Now, the time has come for you to begin the probate process. You’re wondering how to handle your mother’s 10-carat diamond solitaire and your father’s classic 1962 Ferrari 250 LM – among other high-ticket items
Your first step is to determine everything’s value
Given the value of these assets, your thought is to sell them and split the proceeds. You cannot, of course, divide anything until you know what it is worth. The first thing you probably want to do is get everything of significant value appraised. That may mean:
- Tracking down experts who deal with the particular type of assets or collectibles
- Paying for appraisals, usually from more than one expert, to see how they value each piece
- Determining how the appraised values will (or will not) affect the distribution of the estate’s assets according to the will.
You may also need to address taxation issues
Depending on the value of these assets, the beneficiaries may owe taxes on them. That’s why it’s important to work with a CPA to ensure that nothing is overlooked. There is no statute of limitations for estate taxes on collectibles. If you simply take the ring and the car and keep them in your possession, the IRS can tax you for them at any time.
Inheritance laws pertaining to collectible items can be tricky. If you are handling the settling of your parent’s estate contact an experienced legal guide. They can assist you with the process from start to finish.