Administration of Estates Generally

ORS 114.305
Transactions authorized for personal representative

Subject to the provisions of ORS 97.130 (Right to control disposition of remains) (2) and (11) and except as restricted or otherwise provided by the will of the decedent, a document of anatomical gift under ORS 97.965 (Persons authorized to make anatomical gift of body or body part of decedent) or by court order, a personal representative, acting reasonably for the benefit of interested persons, is authorized to:


Direct and authorize disposition of the remains of the decedent pursuant to ORS 97.130 (Right to control disposition of remains) and incur expenses for the funeral in a manner suitable to the condition in life of the decedent. Only those funeral expenses necessary for a plain and decent funeral may be paid from the estate if the assets are insufficient to pay the claims of the Department of Human Services and the Oregon Health Authority for the net amount of public assistance, as defined in ORS 411.010 (Definitions), or medical assistance, as defined in ORS 414.025 (Definitions for ORS chapters 411, 413 and 414), paid to or for the decedent and for care and maintenance of any decedent who was at a state institution to the extent provided in ORS 179.610 (Definitions for ORS 179.610 to 179.770) to 179.770 (Rules).


Retain assets owned by the decedent pending distribution or liquidation.


Receive assets from fiduciaries or other sources.


Complete, compromise or refuse performance of contracts of the decedent that continue as obligations of the estate, as the personal representative may determine under the circumstances. In performing enforceable contracts by the decedent to convey or lease real property, the personal representative, among other courses of action, may:


Execute and deliver a deed upon satisfaction of any sum remaining unpaid or upon receipt of the note of the purchaser adequately secured; or


Deliver a deed in escrow with directions that the proceeds, when paid in accordance with the escrow agreement, be paid to the successors of the decedent, as designated in the escrow agreement.


Satisfy written pledges of the decedent for contributions, whether or not the pledges constituted binding obligations of the decedent or were properly presented as claims.


Deposit funds not needed to meet currently payable debts and expenses, and not immediately distributable, in bank or savings and loan association accounts, or invest the funds in bank or savings and loan association certificates of deposit, or federally regulated money-market funds and short-term investment funds suitable for investment by trustees under ORS 130.750 (Trustee’s duty to comply with prudent investor rule) to 130.775 (Trust language authorizing investments permitted under prudent investor rule), or short-term United States Government obligations.


Abandon burdensome property when it is valueless, or is so encumbered or is in a condition that it is of no benefit to the estate.


Vote stocks or other securities in person or by general or limited proxy.


Pay calls, assessments and other sums chargeable or accruing against or on account of securities.


Sell or exercise stock subscription or conversion rights.


Consent, directly or through a committee or other agent, to the reorganization, consolidation, merger, dissolution or liquidation of a corporation or other business enterprise.


Hold a security in the name of a nominee or in other form without disclosure of the interest of the estate, but the personal representative is liable for any act of the nominee in connection with the security so held.


Insure the assets of the estate against damage and loss, and insure the personal representative against liability to third persons.


Advance or borrow money with or without security.


Compromise, extend, renew or otherwise modify an obligation owing to the estate. A personal representative who holds a mortgage, pledge, lien or other security interest may accept a conveyance or transfer of the encumbered asset in lieu of foreclosure in full or partial satisfaction of the indebtedness.


Accept other real property in part payment of the purchase price of real property sold by the personal representative.


Pay taxes, assessments and expenses incident to the administration of the estate.


Employ qualified persons, including attorneys, accountants and investment advisers, to advise and assist the personal representative and to perform acts of administration, whether or not discretionary, on behalf of the personal representative.


Prosecute or defend actions, claims or proceedings in any jurisdiction for the protection of the estate and of the personal representative in the performance of duties as personal representative.


Prosecute claims of the decedent including those for personal injury or wrongful death.


Continue any business or venture in which the decedent was engaged at the time of death to preserve the value of the business or venture.


Incorporate or otherwise change the business form of any business or venture in which the decedent was engaged at the time of death.


Discontinue and wind up any business or venture in which the decedent was engaged at the time of death.


Provide for exoneration of the personal representative from personal liability in any contract entered into on behalf of the estate.


Satisfy and settle claims and distribute the estate as provided in ORS chapters 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116 and 117.


Perform all other acts required or permitted by law or by the will of the decedent. [1969 c.591 §127; 1969 c.597 §278; 1977 c.211 §1; 1981 c.278 §1; 1995 c.157 §16; 1997 c.472 §10; 2001 c.900 §17; 2005 c.348 §126; 2007 c.681 §25; 2011 c.164 §4; 2011 c.720 §59; 2013 c.688 §16; 2016 c.42 §22; 2019 c.83 §2]
§§ 114.255 to 114.435

Notes of Decisions

Where ORS 30.070 grants personal representative "full power" to settle wrongful death claim with approval of probate court and does not require notice to beneficiaries or grant them right to intervene in proceeding to approve settlement but only to be heard as matter of right regarding allocation of proceeds, if personal representative breached fiduciary duty, beneficiaries have remedy under ORS 114.395 and 114.405. Hughes v. White, 41 Or App 439, 599 P2d 1147 (1979), aff'd 289 Or 13, 609 P2d 365 (1980)


Last accessed
Jun. 26, 2021