Estate Settlement

Providing Peace of Mind

Whether you’re planning for or working through the estate settlement process, it can be overwhelming. As a neutral third-party, we can take care of the details fairly and objectively, ensuring the right choices are made. We’ll provide guidance throughout the entire process and alleviate stress so the focus can be on family or beneficiaries.

Team of financial professionals discussing an estate plan.

An Experienced Team

At Fifth Third Private Bank, we have over 100 years of experience in settling estates. Our team of highly credentialed professionals will partner with you and your advisors to fulfill your legacy. In addition to estate settlement, we can advise on personal finance, investments, and taxes—tying all the pieces together.

Ensuring Your Plans Succeed

You’ve put a lot of time and thought into crafting your estate plan, as a well laid out blueprint of your wishes. We can take that blueprint and execute your plans as you designed them, helping to navigate any roadblocks along the way.

A couple riding bikes after making their wills and getting their estate plans in order with Fifth Third Bank.

Saving Your Family Time

Estate settlement can be very technical and time consuming, with legal requirements, tax filings, as well as fiduciary duties and responsibilities. When you name Fifth Third as an agent or executor/trustee, you can get back to your life knowing all the details and decisions will be handled carefully. Services are customized for each unique situation.

We Can Serve As:

Agent for the Executor/Trustee

We can assist in advising and guiding the fiduciary throughout the estate settlement process.

Ensuring Your Plans Succeed

We’ll assume the full role and responsibilities of carrying out the terms of the will and/or trust, serving in a fiduciary capacity.

As Executor, Trustee or Agent for the Executor or Trustee, We Can:

  • Manage and oversee the entire administration process
  • Orchestrate legal title ownership changes
  • Collect, value and safeguard all assets
  • Prepare inventory and accountings
  • Coordinate the filing of probate documents and tax returns
  • Collect income, pay expenses and taxes, and settle claims
  • Provide access to appraisers, auctioneers and additional resources
  • Provide custody and investment management of securities and other assets
  • Distribute assets following the terms of the will and/or trust

Estate Administration Checklist and Timeline

Estate settlement is a complex process and depending on the situation, can take between 18 months to three years to complete. Below is an example of a fluid timeline and what you can expect from us.

0-6 Months

The focus during this period is on identifying assets and liabilities, working on required tax returns and making some initial legal and tax decisions.

  • Review will and trust agreements
  • Identify tax deadlines
  • Identify, collect and safeguard assets
  • Determine cash needs
  • Collaborate with advisors
  • Initial communication with beneficiaries—process overview
  • Prepare and file all necessary Attorney General filings—if charitable trust
  • Address initial legal notices and court filings
  • Arrange appraisals, collection and sales of property
  • Secure property
  • Investigate business and partnership arrangements
  • Pay final debts and expenses

6-9 Months

The focus now shifts to finalizing and filing tax returns. After filing returns, we can make partial distributions or fund trusts and help beneficiaries with financial planning.

  • Information gathering
  • Advise on various tax elections and post-mortem planning opportunities
  • Finalize and file estate tax returns
  • Make partial distributions to the beneficiaries
  • Help beneficiaries with financial planning and/or disability planning
  • Create and finalize an inventory of assets

9-36 Months

Once all returns are approved, final distributions can occur, final income taxes can be filed and the estate settlement process can be completed.

  • Finalize and file income tax returns
  • Provide accountings
  • Keep beneficiaries informed
  • Ensure tax information is supplied to proper parties
  • Resolve any tax audits
  • Ensure all creditors and expenses have been paid
  • Make final distributions
  • Provide notice of conclusion of settlement

We are here to help

With your financial goals in mind, your dedicated advisor can assist with investment solutions to help preserve your wealth, increase your assets, protect your business, and help leave a lasting legacy.
Call us at 866.488.0017

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