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Executors and administrators of decedents' estates in Virginia are required to account for all assets of the estate. It is a process of charge and discharge.
The process is like balancing a checkbook. We start with our last ending balance, we add all funds received, account for and subtract all funds disbursed, and then calculate our new ending balance. In the case of administering a decedent's estate, when the process is complete and the final accounting is filed, the ending balance will be zero.
The personal representative of a decedent's estate must file an inventory and then annual accountings with the commissioner of accounts for the court where the personal representative qualified.
Accountings must be supported by documentation for each disbursement or distribution of estate assets, either by canceled check, receipt or other proper voucher.
The commissioner of accounts reviews the inventory and audits each account to confirm that all assets and disbursements are properly accounted for and documented.
If a personal representative fails to timely file the required inventory and accountings, the commissioner of accounts is required to take appropriate legal action to make the personal representative meet these requirements. If the personal representative cannot account for the assets, the commissioner of accounts must bring the matter before the court to determine the personal representative's liability for the loss.
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