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The role of an executor

View profile for Jill Rushton
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Do I need to instruct a solicitor if I am the personal representative of an estate?

An executor is chosen by a person making a Will to handle their estate upon their death. The executor or executors handle the distribution of assets and pay any debts as well as handling any other interests expressed in the Will. In order to be able to do this, they apply for the Grant of Probate.

You can act as an executor even if you are named as a beneficiary in the Will. The person making the Will can appoint as many people as they wish in the Will but only four of the named executors can take out the Grant of Probate. This way responsibility can be shared with others but decisions are joint. Being an executor is emotionally difficult and it can be time intensive.

Executors have a number of roles in the probate process

These include but are not limited to...

  • Securing any property after the person has passed away and notifying the insurer
  • Registering the death
  • They gather information and contact all the organisations where the person may have held assets e.g. the bank
  • They submit an inheritance tax form and pay inheritance tax to the HMRC
  • They apply for the Grant of Probate in order to collect all assets and money due to the estate of the person who has died (including property) and to pay off the debts
  • They pay any outstanding taxes and debts (out of the estate)
  • They distribute the estate to the beneficiaries
  • They arrange the funeral, if the Will contains specific instructions for them to do so
  • They keep records and prepare estate accounts

If you would like to discuss how we could assist you with the administration of the estate or your role as executor please call us today on 0161 696 6229 or complete our online enquiry form and a member of the team will contact you to discuss your requirements.

Our legal experts can also assist with related areas like making a Will or Lasting Power of Attorney.

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