The Role of an Executor

When you are asked to be an Executor of a Will, you must understand what it entails and what you will be required to do.

The words ‘Executor’ and ‘Trustee’ of a Will are often lumped together. The ‘Executor’ side of the phrase is working as the personal representative of the Deceased. Usually this is in conjunction with the Lawyer who is acting on the Estate to assist with coordination of all aspects of that which is set out in the Will. An Executor’s jobs will include:

  • Organising and accepting responsibility for the Deceased’s funeral
  • Obtaining Probate (which is a High Court document confirming that the Executor’s are authorised to administer the Deceased’s estate) this will be required where one asset of the deceased has a value of over $15,000
  • Itemising the assets and liabilities of the Deceased
  • Distribution of chattels and motor vehicles of the Deceased
  • Payment of the Deceased’s liabilities
  • The transfer and distribution of all property, cash and investments in accordance with the provisions of the Will; and
  • Attending to a final tax return to the date of death.

The ‘Trustee’ aspect relates to where the Executor is required to hold onto a portion of the Estate until the happening of a future event.  For example, if a child is to receive a share of a Deceased’s Estate at a certain age and he or she must wait until obtaining that age before they can receive that share.  Up until that date, the Executor is exercising a Trusteeship role.

Before agreeing to become somebody’s Executor in their Will, we suggest that you should contact us to discuss any concerns that you may have in accepting this role.

If you have any questions about the matters raised in these articles, please call to discuss further.

Lifelaw Team

Stephen JefferyMonica RyanGerard ThwaitesChris AndersonRosemary AitkenVanessa Boyd, Sherie AdamsLisa PennAnt LilleyJulie Hutton

Also in this edition:

LifeLaw December Newsletter

This is the second article in our Trust Series.

Click here for other Lifelaw articles.

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Monica Ryan
Gerard Thwaites
Chris Anderson

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