Appointing Executors

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lynbrown | 09:06 Sat 19th Sep 2015 | Law
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When drawing up a will, must one of the executors be a lawyer? I would quite like to name my three children as executors. They will be the only beneficiaries.


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Not only is it not compulsory for an executor to be a lawyer, it's also most inadvisable, unless it's a very complicated estate. They charge the earth. The whole thing can be handled quite easily by anybody with half a brain.
No, one of the executors does not need to (and isn't normally) a lawyer. Where there is more than one executor, the executors are jointly responsible for administering the estate (the deceased's property and possessions). It is normal for one executor to take a leading role. The executors may also decide to appoint a solicitor to give them advice and handle paperwork.
I'd be very careful about specifying whom you want to take on the leading role. Dividing up an estate, even one of very little worth, and particularly if there are debts, can cause feuds in the closest knit families.
Even if the estate is complicated. DO NOT nominate a lawyer or a law firm to be an executor. If the executor(s) need legal help they can choose to purchase it when the time comes and won't be tied to whomever is named in the will. As well as unnecessary charges, there is also the issue of what happens if the named lawyer or firm are no longer in business and you need to track down whoever has replaced them.
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thanks for such helpful replies. Our 1995 wills have been lost by the lawyers who drew it up and we are having to make new wills - at no charge. But I am reluctant to let them have anything to do with our affairs - who is to say they wont lose these new wills too! So once they are drawn up, I shall take the originals and find a safe place, maybe deposit box. Glad I don't need a lawyer.
tell the executors where they are though
better than telling the executors who they are is to ask them if they prepared to act. My executor has got a copy of my will, you can also lodge the will at the probate office.
appoint the three kids
dont appoint the lawyer - he will charge the earth and take an age
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