Home > Wills > Appointing an Executor for Your Will

Appointing an Executor for Your Will

By: J.A.J Aaronson - Updated: 17 Apr 2014 | comments*Discuss
 
Executor Will Appoint Testament Testator

Other articles in this section have dealt with the importance of writing a will and the vital instructions that are contained within such a document (read Why You Should Make A Will and Making Your Own Will). These are guidelines and stipulations that will have a defining effect on the way in which your affairs are dealt with after your death, including the distribution (or disbursement) of your estate.

The gravity of this document carries with it certain implications. The first of these is ensuring that it is written in a legally acceptable form, guidelines for the achievement of which are also contained in an article elsewhere in this section (again see Making Your Own Will). However, another vitally important consideration when writing your will is the nomination of executors.

Their Responsibilities

The testator (the individual making the will) is able to nominate several executors, or just one. The responsibilities of these individuals are wide-ranging. First and foremost, they will be charged with ensuring that the affairs of the testator are dealt with according to the wishes outlined in the document. Literally, they will ‘execute’ the wishes left in the will. This can include sensitive financial dealings, including the establishment of trusts and the distribution of assets to dependants who may require immediate help.

Similarly, the executor may be expected to protect some assets from creditors (again through trusts) and, importantly, may also be required to deal with the guardianship of any surviving orphaned children. As can be seen, the responsibilities of an executor are great.

As a result, the testator’s choice of individual to fill this post is an important one. In many cases, those who are writing a will choose simply to nominate their spouse or civil partner, as they are their most trusted friend. Indeed, this is one of the reasons why it is possible to nominate more than one executor. If both you and your spouse or civil partner died at the same time, this helps to ensure that there would still be someone trustworthy to carry out your instructions. So if you choose to nominate your spouse or civil partner, it is recommended that you also choose another potential executor.

Making Your Nomination

You should, of course, always consult your potential choice of individual before placing them in your will. It is legally acceptable for a nominated executor to choose not to take up their responsibilities (another good reason for nominating more than one), and you should therefore ensure that they understand exactly what it is that will be expected of them.

In order to avoid such questions, some people prefer to nominate a professional organisation of executors to carry out their instructions. This might be a bank, or a dedicated company. There have been mixed reports of the efficiency of these organisations, however, with many recent complaints that they have not dealt with financial matters in a sensible way. Furthermore, these professionals often charge a fairly substantial amount for their services, often a percentage of the total estate.

Indeed, compensation for the hard work of executors is also something that should be considered. The testator is legally entitled to stipulate that the nominees should receive a gift from the estate on completion of the work, and any reasonable costs incurred by the executor should also be met by the estate.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
My late father died over 10 years ago now, but there has still been no grant of probate applied for or any distribution between the 2 heirs of the few remaining assets, artwork and proceeds of the sales of the same.The executors have the funds and all information required to settle all the liabilities, but simply produce one excuse or problem after another. They will not provide accounts, any explanations or even answer correspondance for that matter. As one of the heirs/beneficiaries of the estate what can be done to resolve this situation, and get them to do the job they have been appointed to do?
Toby Hogarth - 15-Jul-11 @ 4:20 PM
How does one make this appointment?Is it as simple as stating Mr ______ is my appointment to be executor of my will, in the will?
Snowie - 3-Apr-11 @ 12:52 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • Amanda
    Re: What is My Tax Code?
    Hi I am getting a second job and I just worked it out with both wages I will still be under my personal allowance at 12500 so will I be taxed…
    4 February 2020
  • Pat
    Re: Payment of Pensions
    Who do I contact to change pension payments to weekly from monthly and is it easy to do regards Pat
    29 January 2020
  • Leelee
    Re: How Will My Second Job Be Taxed?
    I worked 48 hours a wk but hey paid for 44 hours a wk iv been offered a second job but only on bank would I have to pay tax…
    29 November 2019
  • Molly
    Re: Should I be Paid Mileage Allowance?
    Hi I have been changed from office based to home based by my company. I have been told I cant claim the first 30 miles of…
    20 November 2019
  • Terri2019
    Re: How Will My Second Job Be Taxed?
    Hi guys I have just started my second job my 1st job I work 21 hours at 8.35 an hour also my other job I work 35 hours and…
    8 November 2019
  • Tay
    Re: How Will My Second Job Be Taxed?
    I’m doing a Cleaning job 10hrs a week I be taking on a second job 12 hrs a week both job pay 8.21 hr how much will I get…
    6 November 2019
  • Matt
    Re: Should I be Paid Mileage Allowance?
    Hi I receive a car allowance that is paid each month alongside my salary. I also receive a mileage rate of 22p, I have…
    4 November 2019
  • Cj53
    Re: Payment of Pensions
    If change my pension from monthly to weekly can I ask for my arrears from monthly to be paid back to me when I change, thank you
    28 October 2019
  • Dan17
    Re: How Will My Second Job Be Taxed?
    Hi, thanks in advance for your help! My first job pays 18k annually (approx 1300 a month), my second, that I'm starting…
    25 October 2019
  • JellyBean
    Re: Are DVLA Car Tax Rates Fair?
    A one-litre Ford Fiesta petrol Ecoboost at the average 12,000 miles per annum, puts out exactly the same CO2 in 12 months as, for…
    18 October 2019