So, this just gets weirder and weirder. Found out last night that I am named as executor in my grandmother's will, although I know nothing of the contents of the will as yet. I spoke with the funeral home last night: they are faxing me a cremation authorization to sign this morning. Happily, my grandmother appears to have pre-planned and pre-paid all of this stuff, so all that remains is for me to sign off on it. It looks like she obtained a small plot in the same cemetery in which my uncle is buried, so hopefully there won't be any of this digging up other people's gravesites to bury urns nonsense this time around.
I spoke with the attorney about 45 minutes ago to try to get an idea of what needs to be done, and it looks like this will be fairly simple. It might not even require that I go to Florida, assuming everything looks on the level. Sadly, it appears that my grandmother may not have kept very much in the way of personal items or family heirlooms. She sold her home about 18 months ago and the proceeds of the sale went to the convalescence home in which she resided until she died. There are two bank accounts, the contents of which I have not yet been able to ascertain. There's a small box of jewelry, including her engagement and wedding rings and several other nice pieces. They'll be faxing me a copy of the will later this morning so I can see what my responsibilities are and how the estate is to be divided.
And, apparently, that's about it.
The attorney's are, of course, poking at me to try to get me to sign a retainer so that they can "handle" getting the jewelry and whatnot appraised, but until I know a bit more about what cash is actually still in those accounts and whether it will be sufficient to cover their fees adequately I can't really make any decisions. Honestly, given that the estate appears to be fairly simply structured, I probably don't really need their help at all. It might make more sense to just fly there, close the accounts myself, and so on. I could leave tonight and only pay about $500 for the ticket, so if the estate has funds of any significance I might just do that.
Sigh. It's weird. I feel so ghoulish, picking through the probate remains of someone I barely knew in any meaningful fashion. And of course, I'm a bit uncomfortable with the little voice in the back of my head that's insistently whispering "What do I get? What do I get? What do I get?" I suppose it's only human to get a bit, well, greedy at a time like this. But admitting that doesn't make me feel terribly proud.
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