Wills & Probate - What Does An Executor of a Will Do

Responsibilities of Executor

One of the most important roles to consider is to who will manage your affairs after your death.

The role of your Will and Estate Planning lawyer is to ensure that when creating your Will you understand the executors you nominate are capable and willing to manage your estate.

You may have more than one executor to manage your estate, but they must be trustworthy and capable of completing the instructions outlined in your Will.

If you have been named as Executor in the Will of a deceased spouse, parent or other loved one, we can help you through what can be a traumatic time for you and your family.

Advice on Wills from Expert Estate Planning Lawyers

What Does an Executor of a Will do?

There are a number of Executorial duties including:

  • Arranging the funeral.
  • Collects and distributes the assets of the deceased.
  • Arranges to pay the debts of the deceased.
  • Dealing with unhappy beneficiaries.
  • Dealing with persons left out of a Will.
  • Obtaining Probate.
  • Selling assets eg car, jewellery, furniture and real estate.
  • File tax returns.
  • As directed under the Will.

To complete these tasks a grant of Probate of the Will (a proving of the terms of the Will) may have to be applied for from the Supreme Court. The formal requirements for the Probate include publication of intent, the preparation of a complete list of assets and liabilities and the filing of certain prescribed documents at Court, online. Paper transactions are no longer being performed.

The Executor has the responsibility to correctly distribute estate assets. It is necessary to publish a notice of intention to do so.

Of course, you may not wish to take on the role of being an Executor. This could be for a variety of reasons including your own health, you may live interstate or overseas, or you may not be a close family member. You can renounce (resign) the role of Executor and should you do so, the terms of the Will still apply but the estate procedure is different.

If there is no Will the deceased is said to have died intestate and certain rules apply. A Grant of Letters of administration may be required. Additional certificates of identity and other matters to establish the entitlements of family members are required to be filed.

For further advice on being an Executor, or advice on what to do when there is no Will, please call Calvin Nelson & Co.

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