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California Wills & Trusts
Copyright 2017, Matthew Bender & Company, Inc., a member of the LexisNexis Group.

2-36 California Wills & Trusts 36.syn


Powers and Duties of Executors


Editorial Consultants--John A. Hartog;Albert G. Handelman;and James B. Ellis

Chapter Summary


This chapter from California Wills and Trusts covers the powers and duties of executors, along with will provisions dealing with those powers. It is not intended as a complete catalog of the powers and duties of executors, but as a discussion of powers that should be considered when a will is drafted.

The chapter begins with an examination of the nature and characteristics of duties and powers, as well as circumstances that may transform a power into a duty. The discussion includes an analysis of the liability of executors and suggestions for drafting will provisions relieving executors of personal liability in appropriate circumstances. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the Independent Administration of Estates Act and will provisions permitting or forbidding executors to administer estates under the Act.

California Wills and Trusts (Matthew Bender) provides a practical guide to planning, drafting, interpreting, and executing wills and trusts in California, explaining both the law and underlying estate and tax planning concepts. It contains extensive coverage of wills, testamentary and inter vivos trusts (both revocable and irrevocable), and durable powers of attorney, along with complete and individual provisions of wills, trusts, and codicils. It also incorporates recent legislative enactments and revisions of the Probate Code, as well as up-to-date citations and references to California statutes and cases.


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For a discussion of the duty of the executor to pay a testator's debts, together with will provisions relating to that duty, see Ch. 23, Provisions for Payment of Taxes, Expenses, and Debts.

For a discussion of the power of the executor to operate a business owned by a testator, together with will provisions relating to that power, see Ch. 29, Devises of Businesses and Business Interests.

For a discussion of the selection and nomination of executors, see Ch. 35, Nomination of Executors.


See Estate Planning Forms and Clauses (Matthew Bender) for an expanded selection of essential will and trust forms and clauses, including detailed clauses specifying investment, business management, and other administrative powers of the executor or trustee.

See Modern Estate Planning (Matthew Bender) for coverage of all key estate planning topics, including gift taxation, transfers and interests subject to estate and gift taxation, estate and gift tax deductions, exclusions and credits, and generation-skipping transfers.

See Current Legal Forms for Estate Planning (Matthew Bender) for a wealth of sample estate planning forms, drafting guidance, and expert legal commentary to assist in the fundamental and often time-consuming task of document drafting.
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