Executry Lawyers East Lothian
If a loved one has died, the thought of sorting out their financial affairs and estate can feel overwhelming. That is why our Executry service is focused on making this process as swift and straightforward for you as possible. We provide clear and reliable legal advice, ongoing and highly responsive communication and specialist support while carrying out your responsibilities as Executor.
Paris Steele are here to help when it matters most, please contact us today and our local team of solicitors will be happy to help.
What are the Executor’s Responsibilities?
List and Value All Assets
The main task of the Executor is to identify all the assets, including property, possessions, bank accounts and shares, of the person who has died and to have them valued accurately at the date of death. The assets must be listed in an Inventory.
Apply for Confirmation
The Executor has to apply for Confirmation to the local Sheriff Clerk by lodging the relevant forms and Inventory. Confirmation is the legal document that gives the Executor the authority to administer the estate. This is required before banks, organisations and individuals will release any money or property belonging to the deceased.
Pay Inheritance Tax (IHT)
Arrangements must be made to pay IHT from the estate. The amount payable will depend on the total value of the assets. If the estate is under the current tax threshold, you still may need to submit an IHT form. We will advise you if this is necessary.
All other debts due from the estate must be settled. Liabilities can include mortgage payments, other loans and household bills. As the Executor, you must take reasonable steps to identify all the money that the deceased owed. This requires you to contact the creditors you can find and ask them to provide a final balance. You also need to wait six months before distributing assets to the beneficiaries to allow all creditors the opportunity to make themselves known.
Distribute the Estate
After debts and tax have been paid, the rest of the estate can be distributed to the beneficiaries. If there is a Will, this will be done following the deceased's wishes (subject to certain legal rights held by any surviving spouse, civil partner and children). If no Will exists, the estate will be divided according to a set of default rules known as the Rules of Intestacy.
How do we Help Executors?
We can help you with the formalities of administering the estate efficiently and cost-effectively. We can explain the required procedures, the likely timescales and give you an indication of the costs involved. Our aim is to make what is undoubtedly a very difficult and stressful time as simple as possible and to complete the administration without delay, keeping you regularly informed of progress.