What is an Executor's role?

Barker Son & Isherwood LLP


Phone 01264 353411

Email info@bsandi.co.uk

If you have been asked to be an Executor in someone’s Will, there are a few things you should know about the role and what is expected of you as an Executor.

  • If there is a Will and you are named in it as an executor, this doesn’t mean you have to take on that role. As long as you haven’t started to administer the estate you can either renounce your role as Executor or ask for power to be reserved, which means you can act later if you need or want to.
  • You could be required to obtain a certificate of death as an Executor or this may be done by a close family member.
  • Check the Will for details of funeral arrangements.
  • Your role as Executor is to collect all the assets, pay any debts that are outstanding and distribute the estate as directed by the terms of the Will.
  • You may need to get Probate and this will depend on the size of the estate.  You should make sure there is adequate insurance arranged on any property that the deceased owned. Inform the insurance company that the property is empty and ask them to provide cover.
  • You need to give people who are owed money by the estate an opportunity to claim this back, so you may want to advertise the death in a local paper and also in the London Gazette. This means that as an Executor, you have taken all steps to inform people of the death and will protect you from any claims against the estate.
  • You will need to value the estate to decide if Inheritance Tax is payable.
  • Once you have collected all the assets, and paid all the debts, including Inheritance Tax, you can distribute the estate as the Will directs.
  • You can ask a solicitor to help you with your role as an Executor and they can also help with Probate if this is required. Any mistakes you make could result in you being legally and financially responsible.

If you need help with any aspects of a Will, being an Executor or managing Probate, please get in touch and we will help you. Contact Tom Pettman on 01264 325810, by email: tpettman@bsandi.co.uk or contact us via our no-obligation online contact form.

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