Duties of Executors & Trustees

Executors and Trustees are the people appointed to administer an estate in accordance with the terms of the will.

The role of an Executor and Trustee consists of:

  • realising the deceased's assets, and where required, obtaining a Grant of Probate
  • paying the debts and any inheritance tax due
  • distributing the net estate to the beneficiaries
  • taking personal responsibility for ensuring that the estate is administered properly and that all liabilities and outstanding tax are paid within strict time limits
  • collating and storing all relevant documentation securely in order to maximise tax allowances
  • becoming legal owners of trust assets on behalf of beneficiaries,  and dealing with these in accordance with the terms set out in the will
  • providing a statutory duty of care imposed by the Trustee Act 2000
  • holding regular meetings and keeping full records and accounts of any Trusts
  • accounting to HM Revenue & Customs and payment of any tax due
  • having the responsibility for seeking the best independent financial advice on investments

These duties are not to be undertaken lightly and Executors and Trustees will find themselves personally liable for any mismanagement.