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Deceased Estates

What is a deceased estate?

A deceased estate refers to the property and assets of a person who has died. This can include real estate, personal possessions, money, as well as other assets.

What is the role of an executor?

A person named as executor in a Will has the responsibility to apply to the Courts for a Grant of Probate and to administer the deceased estate. This involves collecting and managing the deceased’s assets, paying debts and distributing estate assets to beneficiaries. The role can be demanding and complex.

Who should be appointed as executor?

Most couples appoint each other as the executor of each other’s estate, with their children acting jointly as backup executors and trustees. If children are too young to act or are not appropriate (for any reason) then third parties must be chosen as the executors or back up executors. Solicitors, accountants and family friends (preferably with business experience) are often chosen.  

Obtaining a grant of probate?

Applying for probate is a process involving an application to the Courts to certify the validity of a Will and to confirm the appointment and authority of the executor. Once probate is granted the executor has the power and authority to administer the estate.

Not all estates require a grant of probate, but most do.

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