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Administration of Estates and Trusts

When someone dies, it is hard enough to deal with the emotional aspects of grief, without the added complication of sorting the legal and financial affairs.

Most people assume that it will be simple and everything will be straight forward especially if they are married. Quite often though the person you expect to deal with your estate will be the very person that is least likely to be in a position to think clearly and understand the importance of the documentation to be completed due to the emotional and practical upheaval of losing a loved one.

Administering someone’s estate imposes the following duties and responsibilities:

  • Draft and prepare the probate papers and submit to the Probate Registry.
  • Complete the relevant Inland Revenue forms and calculate any inheritance tax payable.
  • Arrange for the payment of any inheritance tax by liaising with beneficiaries/banks.
  • Place the relevant Trustee Act Notices to require any claimants to come forward.
  • Identify any life or minority interests.
  • Set up and manage any Trusts created by the Will.
  • Ensure that the legal procedures are adhered to, which will enable the state to be administered correctly.
  • Contact the financial institutions, government bodies and other interested parties, and obtain details of all assets and liabilities of the estate.
  • Arrange any necessary formal valuation of any assets, e.g. house, jewelry, company.
  • Establish whether there are any joint assets and liaise with the joint holder about the transfer.
  • Arrange the sale of the assets, cashing in and closing of accounts.
  • Complete and submit any necessary income tax returns both for the period to death and during the administration period.
  • Obtain clearance from HM Revenue and Customs.
  • Prepare a final income tax return prior to distribution of the estate.
  • Calculate whether there is any income tax or capital gains tax payable and arrange payment with HM Revenue and Customs.
  • Collect in all of the assets of the estate.
  • Pay all liabilities of the estate having regard to the correct statuary provisions.
  • Prepare estate accounts and obtain approval.
  • Distribute the proceeds of the estate.

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