What an executor of your will does

Your executor will take on the job of helping to carry out the wishes you leave in your will when you die. Even if your will is straightforward, it’s a time consuming task and your executor will need to be someone who is good with financial and legal processes as well as being a good communicator. They’ll be collecting all estate assets that will eventually be distributed to your beneficiaries. It’s not uncommon for people to choose those closest to them, but it’s important to remember that the job of an executor can be a difficult one as they’ll be dealing with the administration of your death. Check out the different ways Public Trust can help out in the administration of an estate below.

How we work as an executor

Our job as executor starts when we’re notified that someone has passed away. We’ll get in touch with family members or beneficiaries to let them know that we hold the will, instruct any funeral wishes and walk family members through the next steps. We aim to make the estate administration process as easy and as quick as possible, but it’s important to note that it’s common for the process to take anywhere between 6-12 months as the following steps are carried out:

  • Assisting with funeral arrangements
  • Coordinating with beneficiaries to confirm assets and debts
  • Applying for and obtaining probate through the High Court
  • Transferring property, closing bank accounts, paying debts, tax and advertising for creditors
  • Accounting for everything in the will and distributing the assets

Why choose Public Trust over someone I personally trust?

It might seem like an obvious choice to have someone close to you looking after your affairs when you’re gone, but you should consider that this might end up being a really trying task for those involved. Not only will your executor need to be capable of carrying out the administration of your estate fairly and accurately, but they’ll need to be aware of the very nuanced situations that might arise around the time of a loved one passing. This means they’ll need to acknowledge the added pressure of supporting, listening and coordinating the beneficiaries of the will which can be a challenging task at a tough time for everyone affected.
When appointed executor, Public Trust can remove the burden from those closest to you and ensure everything is carried out smoothly and accurately, giving you peace of mind that it’s all taken care of.

If you do decide that choosing an executor that is close to you is the way to go, our Executor Assist service lets your executor keep control whilst being able to lean on us as support, offering estate administration guidance and help. Check out how we can help in the administration of your estate here.

How much will it cost?

Public Trust doesn’t take a percentage of an estate and our fees are based on the work we complete – which will vary from estate to estate depending on the complexity and the level of expertise needed.

Our fees and charges for straightforward estates are listed below and we are always happy to provide a more detailed and accurate estimate before any agreement to proceed with our services is made.

See more about how our fees and charges are calculated here.

Throughout the estate administration process, we will update beneficiaries at multiple stages in the process on the current total of any applicable fees and charges so that no one is met with any surprises along the way.

Choosing an executor is an important part of making your will and whether you choose a trusted family member, friend or engage a professional service, you’ll need to be confident that they’re capable and willing to take on the role. Although bringing on a trustee organisation costs money, it gives you the option to take some or all of the administrative burden off your loved ones and provides an objective voice to help manage any tensions that can arise when someone passes away. Find out more about how we can help when a loved one passes away