When making a will, we constantly get asked by our clients what the Executor of a will does and who they should nominate to be their Executor.
What does an Executor of a will do?
Think of the Executor of your last will and testament as the Administrator or Manager or your estate or the person who carries out your wishes. The Executor has a lot of responsibility over your estate and may require professional assistance in carrying out their duties if your estate is complicated or if they do not have time. Some common responsibilities of an Executor may include:
- Locating your will and contacting beneficiaries accordingly.
- Obtaining Probate: A legal process that proves the validity of a will, this is an essential step before your estate can be administered / distributed and is usually done by a Lawyer
- Paying debts from your estate
- Valuing the estate
- Dividing your estate: after any debts have been paid, the Executor distributes the assets of your estate according to your will
The Executor has a lot of responsibility over your estate and may require professional assistance in carrying out their duties.
Who should I Nominate as the Executor of my last will and testament?
Choosing who to be your Executor is a very important part of your Will and you should think carefully about who you want to nominate. It is common to list children, nieces, nephews and even your Solicitor or Accountant. You can nominate multiple Executors at once and change the Executor/s whenever you like however the more people you nominate, the more difficult a decision with your estate can be. Be sure to think about:
- Nominating somebody younger than you is a good idea so in the event you pass away, your Executor is still around and able to carry out your wishes.
- Make sure you trust your Executor as they will be carrying out your wishes when you are no longer around
- The Executor should be happy to be listed on your will as an Executor (make sure you give them a copy of your will and explain this to them).
- Make sure your Executor/s are good at paperwork and managing legal issues.
With 27+ years experience – If you want to create or change a new Will, Power of Attorney or Enduring Guardian or discuss whether you have appointed the best people in these roles, give Maspero Legal a call today on 02 8052 3322.