Are you a Will Executor?
Have you been chosen by a family member or friend to be the Executor of their Will? This means that you have been given responsibility to manage their estate according to the terms they’ve outlined in their Will and to protect their assets under the various laws and rules that govern estate administration in Britain.
An Executor’s duties may include responsibilities such as:
- Organising the funeral, notices for the paper, flowers
- Locating the Will
- Obtaining a copy of the Death Certificate
- Making sure any property and assets are safe and secure
- Determining the value of assets
- Applying for Probate
- Paying insurance policies, debts and taxes
- Collecting monies belonging to the deceased from financial institutions and insurance companies
- Collecting debts owed to the deceased
- Lodging tax returns for the deceased and for the estate
- Selling properties and assets
- Reporting to beneficiaries
- Distributing the proceeds of the estate to beneficiaries
- Setting up trusts
Being an Executor can be overwhelming, particularly when you are grieving, but we are available to guide you through.
Do Executors get paid?
It depends. An Executor cannot claim a salary or hourly rate but it may be possible to submit a claim for compensation for reasonable expenses from the estate.
Do I need a Solicitor?
Estates vary in complexity and Executor’s duties can be complicated, so it may be a good idea to get advice from a solicitor. The cost of legal advice is usually covered by the estate, not the Executors.
What is Probate?
Probate is recognition of the Will’s validity and permission from the Supreme Court for the Executors named in the Will of the deceased to carry out their duties in relation to the Estate. You will likely need a grant of Probate to deal with the assets of an estate, such as selling property and obtaining bank funds.
What if there is no Will?
This situation is referred to as intestacy and the law determines how assets will be shared out after debts have been paid. If you are the next of kin you can apply for authority to finalise the estate.
What if I’m not up to the job?
Just because you have been named an Executor doesn’t mean you have to accept the responsibility. If there is another Executor named, they can take on the whole of the job, or if you are the sole Executor you can apply to the Court to appoint someone else. You cannot change your mind later though – giving up the responsibility is final.
Our fees for dealing with the administration of an estate are based on hourly rates, ranging between £165.00 and £250.00, plus VAT.
We may also charge a percentage fee of 0.75% of the gross value of all property included in the estate, along with a fee of 1.5% of the gross value of all other assets contained within the estate. If this is to be charged it will be detailed in our client care letter.
A straightforward and low value estate is likely to cost between £2,500 and £7,500, plus VAT.
A more complex and medium value estate is likely to cost between £7,500 and £15,000, plus VAT.
A high complexity estate, or a high value estate, is likely to cost between £15,000 and £100,000, plus VAT.
- Probate fee £155 (subject to amendment in 2019) and 50p per office copy.
- Oath fees of £7 per executor.
- Valuer’s fees – to be advised.
- Cost of disposing of estate assets – to be advised.
The type of work that will be undertaken during an estates administration is listed below:
- Extensive interview with you to advise on the terms of the deceased’s will/intestacy provisions and to discuss the duties and powers as personal representatives.
- Immediate practical measures such as registering the death, arranging the funeral and securing the property (if necessary).
- Obtaining valuations of the estate assets and liabilities.
- Making enquiries and obtaining full details regarding the deceased’s pension and lifetime gifts.
- Consider and calculating (where applicable) any liability in respect of Inheritance Tax or Capital Gains Tax.
- Draft application for Probate or Letters of Administration and supporting oath(s). Discuss these documents with the personal representatives and arrange for signing. File the documentation with the relevant Probate Registry.
- Liaise with all relevant organisations to collect in assets and settle all outstanding liabilities.
- Advertising for creditors if appropriate.
- Settlement of the deceased’s income tax and/or capital gains tax position to date of death.
- Liaising with beneficiaries regarding payment of legacies and/or interim distributions to legatees and/or residuary beneficiaries.
- Preparation of Estate Accounts detailing transactions in the administration of the estate.
- Settlement of the deceased’s income tax and/or capital gains tax position for the administration period (ie date of death to completion of the administration of the estate).
- Report to Trustees and beneficiaries throughout the administration of the Estate and at its conclusion.
Contact us to find out more or to arrange an appointment with an experienced Probate solicitor.