All News

Estate Administration Paralegal

Posted on March 1st, 2023 at 8:56 AM


Job Title: Estate Administration Paralegal
Division: Transaction & Personal

Summary: The Estate Administration Paralegal shall have the general responsibility for all aspects of the administration of estates and trusts as assigned by attorney. He/she shall prepare all required probate documents and court filings, inheritance and estate tax returns, assist with preparation of fiduciary income tax returns, asset transfers and claims, advise executors and trustees through all aspects of the estate/trust administration process and provide estate/trust related support to other members of the firm.

Minimum Qualifications:

  1. Bachelor's degree in Accounting, Finance, or other related field
  2. One (1) to three (3) years of progressively responsible experience in estate or trust administration, finance, accounting, or business (preferably in the state of Pennsylvania).
  3. Proven ability to analyze bank and investment account statements, prepare federal and state death tax returns and familiarity with personal and fiduciary income tax and federal gift tax returns.
  4. Computer skills including the use of Windows based programs, including Excel.
  5. Excellent customer service attitude and the ability to communicate effectively with clients and other service providers, either by phone or in person.
  6. Able to work at least 37 ½ hours per week to perform the essential duties of the position.
  7. Strong organizational and analytical skills required. Capacity to learn and understand new concepts and apply them correctly.

Duties and Responsibilities: “Essential functions” are primarily job duties that incumbents must be able to perform unassisted or with some reasonable accommodation made by the employer.

  1. Attend client meetings, identify and gather relevant information required for the administration of the estate or trust. Review Wills and trust documents to determine client’s dispositive intent. Keep accurate records and file notes for attorney review.
  2. Prepare probate and other support documents for estate/trust administration based on estate planning documents, individual tax returns, personal financial statements and other documentation as provided by investment advisors, accountants and clients.
  3. Assist client with life insurance, IRA and annuity claims, asset identification, re-registrations and sales, account closures and retitling, etc.
  4. Prepare PA Inheritance Tax and Federal Estate Tax Returns
  5. Guide the executor or trustee through the complete administration process.
  6. Maintain familiarity and compliance with Pennsylvania Orphans’ Court Rules pertaining to estates and trusts.
  7. Communicate effectively with other paralegals, clients, third parties (e.g. accountants, investment advisors, and insurance brokers), attorneys and support staff.
  8. Monitor and advise attorney of status of administration and bring conflicts to the attention of the responsible attorney.
  9. Utilize computer and appropriate estate software to perform tasks in an efficient manner and according to Knox Best Practices.
  10. Participate in training programs to learn and incorporate new computer skills and operational methods to meet prevailing Knox Best Practices as required for the position.
  11. Provide support to other members of the firm with regard to estate and trust matters. Other duties as assigned by supervisor or attorneys.

Required Characteristics:

  1. Organized - Coordinate work and set priorities to complete tasks in a timely manner and meet deadlines. Maintain neat and orderly filing systems and work areas.
  2. Motivated - Take initiative in obtaining information required to complete assignments. Ask questions when in doubt. Display innovation and select suitable alternatives when confronted by obstacles.
  3. Collaborative - Exhibit teamwork effort. Adjust work priorities and go with the flow when changes occur. Cooperate with and assist fellow employees.
  4. Professional - Follow the ethical requirements as set forth by the Rules of Professional Conduct of the state. Poised and effective under pressure. Accept constructive criticism in a positive manner. Display willingness to discuss problems with appropriate party. Apply common sense and integrity to daily work and exercise proper judgment in dealing with clients. Extend kindness and consideration to fellow employees.
  5. Responsible - Keep current with supervisor by following through on assignments and discussing schedules. Display flexibility with work hours when necessary to complete assigned work. Exhibit dependability through good attendance and timeliness. Maintain confidentiality.

Working Conditions: Typical law firm office environment with generally little exposure to excessive noise, dust, temperature extremes, and the like.

The above is intended to describe the general content of and requirements for the performance of this job. It is not to be construed as an exhaustive statement of essential functions, responsibilities or requirements.