Executor Compensation and Fees (NM)

If the will does not specify how executor compensation should be calculated, NM estates must follow state compensation rules (see NM calculator below).

In New Mexico, the estate executor is known as a "personal representative".

In determining executor fees, the state of New Mexico uses the commonly accepted principle of "reasonable" compensation, and says nothing further in the law. In practice, this means that the following factors are often considered:

  • Nature of the work involved (time, effort, difficulty, skills required)
  • Compensation customarily charged (in the community for similar services)
  • Size of the estate (and the results obtained)
  • Any time limitations
  • Experience and capabilities of the person

It's common in NM to use a "services-rendered" approach, and bill by the hour (the hourly rate can be determined according to the factors above). Executors have also traditionally set fees as a percentage of the overall estate value, and in fact calculating fees as a graduated percentage of the estate was previously mandated by law.

So for example, a $400K estate which required 700 hours of work might generate $16K in executor fees (see calculator below).

Whatever approach you decide, it is important that you keep detailed records of your efforts in case you need to justify your fee in court:

  • Nature of the task (e.g., Drove to bank to get medallion stamp for IBM stock)
  • Amount of time spent (e.g., 2 hours)
  • Hourly rate for the task (e.g., $35/hour)
  • Results (e.g., sold the car for Blue Book value)

Even if a will specifies the compensation for the executor (and there is no contract with the decedent regarding compensation), the executor may renounce the relevant provision before being assigned executor, and be entitled to reasonable compensation.

See New Mexico Statutes § 45-3-719.

NM Compensation Calculator

EstateExec provides the following executor compensation estimator for NM estates, but please keep in mind that there are no hard and fast rules for NM estates, and ultimately you must determine what would be reasonable for your particular circumstances. By using this estimator, you acknowledge that EstateExec provides any results as informational input only, not as legal advice, and cannot be held responsible for any inaccuracies for, or misunderstandings about, any given estate.

Below EstateExec provides two compensation approaches: you can decide which, if either, is appropriate for you. The first uses a sliding percentage scale based on the total estate gross value (the larger the estate, the smaller the percentage); the second simply compensates the executor for the value of his or her time, and is the more common approach in NM. See estimation methodology for details.

You can use this calculator now, but if you use EstateExec to help you track the settlement process, it will automatically calculate the inputs for you based on the estate and suggest those values in the fields below (you can create an estate for free).

An estimate using Estate Value

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Compensation:  $ -

An estimate using Executor Hours

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Compensation:  $ -
Average of both approaches:  $ -

See also Compensation for general remarks on executor compensation.

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