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What happens when an Executor is unwilling or unable to act?

When preparing your Will, you can name up to four people to be the Executors of your estate. The Executor is the person or people who will have the authority to deal with and administer your estate after your death.

The role of your Executor/s is to administer your estate by carrying out the following tasks:

  1. Identifying the assets and liabilities;
  2. Collecting in all the assets;
  3. Paying any debts and liabilities incurred in your lifetime;
  4. Paying the funeral expenses and other expenses;
  5. Accounting for and distributing your estate in accordance with your wishes set out in your Will.

In order for an Executor to be able to carry out his duties, he must have the capacity to act and must also be willing to act.

If an Executor does not have capacity or is unwilling to act, depending on the specific circumstances, he may decide to either:-

  1. Renounce
  2. Have power reserved to him
  3. Give a power of attorney to another person to act on his behalf

By naming more than on Executor, the other Executor/s can continue to act if either circumstances apply.

If you wish to discuss making a Will or require assistance in obtaining a Grant of Probate, please contact Ann Coutts on 020 8502 3991 for more information.