How to give up as executor.
If you have been made executor in a Will and you don’t want to do it, then you do not have to. You can give up your right to act as executor by signing a “deed of renunciation” but only before you take an action. If you do anything at all which could be consider to be part of the executors duties you are stuck with the job. Though you could delegate it to us and the estate can pay us: at least that way you retain control but don’t have to do the work.
If you don’t want the job of executor, renounce it and quickly (that’s the jargon for giving it up.) If you act as executor in any way, that is called intermeddling, and you have automatically accepted liability for any mistakes you make in dealing with the persons affairs and you are stuck with the job. You can’t give up the role of executor and reserve your right to act. You can only give up your right entirely under this procedure. If that is not your wish, it is possible to defer to other executors, allow them to proceed but reserve you own right to become an active executor. Once the deed of renunciation has been signed, it takes effect, but you can withdraw it before it has been received by the Probate Registry. Afterwards you can’t change your mind without special permission. So to maintain control you could consider delegating the hard work to us.
How do I obtain a ‘deed of renunciation’?
Contact us and we will be pleased to organise a deed of renunciation for you for a sensible fee – or just do the job for you if you prefer, which may be the only alternative if you have already done anything which could be considered intermeddling. If you have, you are stuck with the job, so call us today!
Can I appoint another person to act as Executor?
Giving up your job as executor does not allow you to appoint anyone else in your place. If you wished to do so, you would need to retain your executorship and (perhaps) delegate the work to us. If the next of kin wants to step in and apply for the Grant of Probate, then they can give the deed of renunciation at the same time.
What happens once I have given up my position as executor?
If the Will included other executors they can generally apply for probate. However, if there were no others, or they have renounced too, then someone must apply to court to be appointed as administrator.
An administrator has to be appointed to deal with their estate. The rules of intestacy give an order in which preference is given to family members to take over as administrator. If there is just one person entitled (e.g. spouse, or sole surviving child), they may renounce (give up) their role as administrator. The option to act then passes to the next relative in line. If more than one person is entitled (e.g. two children), then they don’t need to renounce their role, as the one who wishes to act simply does. The others don’t need to formally renounce.
Why is it so formal to give up your role as executor?
If you are acting as an executor in a Will (but not an administrator where there was not a Will), you can just leave the role of probate process to the other executor(s) under the option of ‘power reserved’. Then you can become involved later if necessary. An executor with power reserved doesn’t need to do anything further.
How do I obtain ‘power reserved’?
If you are dealing with probate yourself, the Probate Registry will deal with this, based on the information you provide on the probate application. If we are involved, we will create the document known as a “notice to a non-proving executor”.