Some very important estate planning roles you need to understand

estate planning

Some very important estate planning roles you need to understand

When it comes to estate planning, it’s not uncommon for people to confuse a few very important roles. In this podcast, Estate Planning Solicitor Elise Jaques clears the differences among estate planning roles.

TRANSCRIPT

Speaker 1:

At Big Law, we are big on providing you great legal help. If you have a family law, business law, wills and estates, commercial law, or conveyancing issue, we’re here to help. Now, here is your podcast.

Dan:

When it comes to estate planning, it’s not uncommon for people to confuse a few very important roles. In this podcastm I’m with Elise Jakes and the estate planning lawyer from Big Law.

Dan:

Elise, what is the difference between an executor and an attorney?

Elise:

That’s actually a great question, Dan, that we get from clients a lot. So an executor is someone that’s actually appointed under your will, which obviously comes into effect upon your death. Your executor is responsible to administer your estate and attend to a distribution of it. In comparison, an attorney is appointed usually under enduring power of attorney. What that means is if you lose capacity, your attorney could be appointed to make decisions about your personal, including health matters and or your financial matters.

Dan:

So what does an executor actually do?

Elise:

So generally the duties and responsibilities of an executor include reducing the assets of a deceased person into possession or collecting the assets, attending to the payment of the debts of the deceased and the administrative expenses of the estate. And finally attending to the actual distribution of the estate after the payment of any debts, to the beneficiaries who are actually named under the will.

Dan:

What about the requirements that someone may need if they’re going to be appointed or take on the position of executor? Are there conditions?

Elise:

So firstly, Dan, an executor must be 18 years of age to act. It’s also a good idea to consider appointing an executor who lives close to you, or at least in the same state or territory as you. Whilst that obviously doesn’t preclude you from appointing a person as your executor, it’s something to consider having regard to the practicalities of signing documents and forms. One of the most important things to consider when appointing your executive though, is that they should be reliable and honest. So you should trust that person or persons will act in the best interest of your estate.

Dan:

What about appointing more than one executor? I mean, firstly, can it be done? And secondly, is that a good idea?

Elise:

Ensure yes, you can appoint more than one executor. However, you shouldn’t appoint more than four executors to act at the one time. It is a good idea to appoint more than one executor and we recommend you do so, but you do need to consider how your executors are going to act. If you actually appoint more than one. This is important because essentially the law stipulates that if you appoint more than one executive to act at the same time, then they must act jointly. So you should think about if your executors would be able to make unanimous decisions regarding your estate. If it’s unlikely, they would be able to agree. Then obviously you should rethink appointing them. The other thing to consider is you could actually appoint your executors successively or simply having a backup executor. What that means is if person A died before you or they were unable to act as your executor, or they simply didn’t want to act, then person B would be able to step in and act as your executor in those circumstances.

Dan:

Is there anything else that someone should be sort of contemplating when appointing an executor?

Elise:

So it’s usually a good idea, Dan, to speak with the person or persons you intend to appoint as your executor to ensure they would be willing to act whilst it’s not an actual requirement that you obtain their approval, there’s going to be little point appointing someone who doesn’t actually want to act as your executor.

Dan:

At least, is it worthwhile in this consideration to be discussing your choice of executor with your lawyer,

Elise:

It is, it’s a good idea to discuss, as I said, are they going to be act able to act together? Sometimes if a brother or sister just don’t get along or don’t see eye to eye, then there’s going to be complexities, obviously in them being able to make decisions jointly. In which case we can discuss, is there someone else who would be better? Perhaps a third party or a family friend or someone that’s close to you and you trust who could act as your executor in that circumstance.

Dan:

Elise, thanks for joining me.

Elise:

Thanks Dan.

Speaker 1:

Thanks for listening. Need further information? Visit us biglaw.com.au.

 

How We Can Help

Big Law Lawyers Strathpine offers you the same comprehensive suite of legal services that you would expect to only find in the city.

We are a successful well-established legal practice based in Strathpine, Brisbane. We have earned a reputation for providing trustworthy, practical legal advice to a diverse range of clients, in both Brisbane and regional Queensland.

Things to Read

What is the Process for Removing a Power of Attorney in Queensland

Granting someone power of attorney is a significant legal step, entrusting that person with the authority to make important decisions about your life. However, situations may arise where you find it necessary to revoke this power. For any of a number of reasons, an attorney may not be able to perform their duties adequately, orRead More »What is the Process for Removing a Power of Attorney in Queensland

What Do the Changes to the Property Law Act and the Introduction of a Seller Disclosure Scheme Mean for Buyers and Sellers of Property?

An updated version of Queensland’s Property Law Act (‘the Act) was recently passed into law designed to modernise, improve and streamline the operation of the Act for both buyers and sellers. Key changes to the Act include: introduction of a statutory seller disclosure scheme (Seller Disclosure Scheme) applying to all freehold sales of land; updatedRead More »What Do the Changes to the Property Law Act and the Introduction of a Seller Disclosure Scheme Mean for Buyers and Sellers of Property?

What are the Disclosure Obligations For a Retirement Village and What Happens if They are Not Complied With

The role of retirement villages in Australian society are increasingly important given our aging population, ideally providing comfortable and secure living arrangements for seniors. The process of securing a place in a retirement village can be complex, however, and a prospective resident should receive expert legal advice before committing their signature to a contract. ToRead More »What are the Disclosure Obligations For a Retirement Village and What Happens if They are Not Complied With

Will Exit Fees Payable at the End of a Retirement Village Lease Affect the Inheritance Available to My Children

Queensland’s weather and lifestyle make it a popular, preferred destination for retirees in Australia, meaning the place of retirement villages as a living option for seniors is an important consideration once working life has ended. There are different arrangements by which residents secure a ‘right to reside’ in Queensland retirement villages, including loan and license… Read More »Will Exit Fees Payable at the End of a Retirement Village Lease Affect the Inheritance Available to My Children

Podcasts to Listen to

Can Step-Children Contest a Will?

It probably comes at no surprise, that in the context of estate administration, people who may be beneficiaries, or those that think they should be, may want to contest the Will. This can often concern step children. In Queensland, this process is often referred to as a family provision claim. To learn more about thisRead More »Can Step-Children Contest a Will?

How can an Executor be removed?

One of the most important aspects of estate planning is of course, making sure you have the right executor. But what happens if things don't work out or circumstances change and you want another executor. In this podcast, Estate Planning Lawyer, Elise Jacques discusses the matter. Elise Jaques Solicitor Make an appointment

What Does the New Property Law Act Mean for Sellers of Property?

In QLD, the Property Law Act 2023 (the Act) passed Parliament on 25 October 2023. The primary objective of the Act is to simplify, streamline and modernise Queensland's property law regime by replacing the Property Law Act 1974 (Qld). But what are the key elements, in particular those that will impact upon sellers of propertyRead More »What Does the New Property Law Act Mean for Sellers of Property?

Avoiding the Estate Planning Risks When Moving into a Retirement Village

In recent years, there has been an exponential increase in the number of retirement villages being built, and of course, the number of people moving into them. In the context of the legalities, there is often an emphasis on the contractual obligations when buying into such a village. But what about the impact on estateRead More »Avoiding the Estate Planning Risks When Moving into a Retirement Village