Being appointed as an Executor for a loved one’s Will can be daunting. The responsibilities are time consuming and can cause stress – especially if this is your first time as an Executor.
It is important to be aware you may be liable for any mistakes made when carrying out duties as an Executor, even if those mistakes were innocently made.
Fortunately, our experienced Solicitor, Rebecca May, is here to tell you the five things you need to know about being named as an Executor of a Will.
What are the key things to think about if you have been asked to be an Executor of someone’s Will?
Firstly, are you prepared to take on the responsibility of carrying out the deceased’s wishes under their Will? You need to ensure you carry out the wishes of the deceased as they would have wanted. Be aware that issues can arise if there are family disputes between members over assets, or if they feel excluded.
What are the main responsibilities of an Executor?
You need to ensure that all the assets of the deceased are cashed, any taxes or debts paid, and distribute the assets in accordance with the Will.
Does the person making the Will need your permission to name you Executor?
There is no formal requirement for the Executor to give consent – though it is sensible to ask permission before appointing them.
Who can be an Executor and does being one mean you can’t be a beneficiary?
Anyone is able to be an Executor providing they are over 18 years old and have adequate mental capacity to do so. It is not uncommon to appoint professional executors such as solicitors or financial advisers. Furthermore, it is a common misconception that you are unable to be a beneficiary and an Executor – however this is not the case.
Can you change your mind about being an Executor?
Yes, it is possible to change your mind. If at the time the person passes away, you do not want or are unable to be the Executor then it is possible to stand down. In this instance, either the appointed replacement or another appropriate person would stand in.
For more advice about updating or creating your Will, contact our Wills & Probate Team today who will be happy to provide professional, friendly advice.
Telephone: 0333 231 6405