Executor's Commission

Every will must designate an executor. While some people think it is an honor to be named, in reality, it involves a lot of work to make sure that the testator's wishes come to fruition and that state law is followed. That being stated, what is an executor entitled to for accomplishing this work?

In many states, the commission of an executor is set by statute and percentages are clearly defined. This is not the case in Pennsylvania. PEF 3537, Section 9.7 states, "The Court shall allow such compensation the personal representative as shall in the circumstances be reasonable and just, and may calculate such compensation on a graduated basis." In determining the reasonableness of a commission, a variety of factors should be examined including the complexity of the matter and most notably the actual time expended.

In the instance in which there is more than one executor, allocation of the overall commission should be undertaken based on the percentage of work performed by one party as compared to the other.