Executry Services

Executry Services at maloco mowat parker: Guiding You Through Estate Management

Navigating the path of estate management can be a complex and emotionally challenging process. At maloco mowat parker, we offer expert executry services to simplify this journey, ensuring your loved one’s legacy is handled with utmost respect and proficiency.

What is Executry Services?

An Executor is a person appointed to administer the estate of a deceased person. This role involves a range of responsibilities from identifying and collecting the deceased’s assets, settling any outstanding debts, paying taxes, to distributing the remaining estate as per the will or law. Many people even here in Scotland tend to be more familiar with the English term of Probate. 

To wind up an estate and to deal with an executry one needs first to have an executor. An executor is responsible for the ingathering and distribution of the estate of the deceased.   If the deceased died having made a will – a situation we refer to as being testate – the will have appointed an executor.  If there isn’t a will – a situation we refer to as intestacy – this requires an application to be made to the Sheriff Court by someone who in law is entitled to be so appointed.  There are strict rules as to who can be appointed an executor and an order of preference as to who can apply for the appointment.

What does an Executor do?

Whilst an executor doesn’t always need the assistance of a solicitor most prefer to have an expert help them discharge their duties and to keep them right on procedure and the law.  At what can be an emotionally charged time when feelings and grief may still be raw, having the reassurance of an expert to help offer guidance is often invaluable. 

Amongst the tasks an executor may have to undertake – and the list isn’t exhaustive – these include: –

Funeral Arrangements

One of the very first steps an Executor will have to take following a death is to register the death and perhaps to make or help make funeral arrangements. The deceased may have given an indication of their wishes in their Will or may have a prepaid funeral plan in place. In the absence of any wishes in the Will, the Executor is entitled to make reasonable arrangements. If there is no estate to cover the costs of the funeral, it is possible to apply for a funeral support payment to help towards these costs.

Investigate the extent of the Estate

The Executor is required to check the terms of the Will, identify the beneficiaries and determine what assets belonged to the deceased at the date of their death. The Executor must also ascertain the value or balance of the assets (including property, bank accounts, shares etc) at the date of death.

Depending on the type of assets a person has or in some cases the value of particular assets, the Executor may be required to obtain what is known as Confirmation (the Scottish equivalent of probate) before they’re able to finalise and ingather the estate. Every bank, life insurance company, and company with whom the deceased held shares will need to be advised of the death, asked to provide the value/ balance of the asset as at date of death and asked to advise what their requirements are and if Confirmation will be required. It is often the case that some assets can be ingathered without Confirmation but it may still be required for others.

An Executor should also determine any debts and liabilities of the deceased so that these can be settled before the estate is distributed to the beneficiaries. The Executor should be satisfied that there are sufficient assets to cover all liabilities before settling anything other than funeral related expenses (which are always settled ahead of anything else).

Pay Inheritance Tax (“IHT”) if due

Once the estate has been valued, the Executor must work out if the estate is liable to pay IHT. An estate is generally liable to IHT if the value of the assets at the date of death exceeds the Nil Rate Band (currently £325,000). Other allowances may be available depending on the circumstances. If the estate is liable to IHT, the Executor must send the necessary paperwork to HMRC. It is advisable to pay any IHT due as soon as practicable to avoid having to pay interest. Tax is payable 6 months after the deceased’s death, with interest applied thereafter.

Apply for Confirmation

If Confirmation is required to deal with the deceased’s assets, this involves the Executor lodging an Application to the Sheriff Court. Part of the Application is an Inventory of all the assets the deceased owned at the date of death, together with each asset’s value or balance at that date. Confirmation, once granted can then be exhibited to each organisation (banks, building societies etc.) together with the Executors instructions for dealing with that asset. This shows the organisation that the Executor is the appropriate person entitled to deal with the estate and that they are therefore paying funds out to the correct person who is entitled to receive it on behalf of the estate. In limited cases, Confirmation may not be required at all.

Ingather the Estate

Once Confirmation has been granted the Executor has the Court’s legal authority to deal with the assets in the estate and can then instruct the sale/ transfer or property, close bank accounts and cash in or transfer investments etc. At this stage, any outstanding debts and expenses due by the estate are settled. The Executor is also responsible for keeping accurate accounts of all their dealings with the funds of the estate and reporting to the residuary beneficiaries.


As well as ingathering the estate and settling liabilities, the Executor is also required to finalise the deceased’s tax affairs. There are 3 taxes which need to be considered: –

Income Tax

Depending on how complex the deceased’s affairs are, the Executor may need to complete an Income Tax return for the tax year to date of death. In most straightforward cases, this will not be necessary, but HMRC will ultimately advise. An Executor will also have to report to HMRC for any untaxed income received during the period of administration, such as bank interest, dividends, rental income etc. These are all paid Gross and so Income Tax will need to be paid before the estate is distributed.

Inheritance Tax (IHT)

As noted above, if Inheritance Tax is due, this requires to be reported to HMRC and any tax due, paid before Confirmation can be granted.

Capital Gains Tax

If any assets are sold during the period of administration (e.g. the sale of the property, shares, investments) at a gain from the date of death value and the overall gain/ loss position results in a gain, Capital Gains Tax may be payable

It is also possible for assets incurring a gain to be appointed to beneficiaries before sale, so that their individual allowances (provided these are not already used up for that year) can be used to offset gains to reduce or avoid an estate liability.

Distribute the Estate

The Executor must then distribute the estate in accordance with the terms of the Will and the Law of Scotland which make provision for things such as Legal Rights (the rights of surviving spouse and children) which apply regardless of the terms of the Will. It is advisable to allow 6 months to pass before distributing the estate. This is the time that creditors have to lodge a claim on the estate. This is important to note as the Executor will be personally liable for these debts if they finalise the estate within 6 months of the date of death.

For further advice on our Executry services email stacey@maloco.co.uk

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What is a Power of Attorney?
A legal document is signed by you at the present time, designating a trusted individual to make choices on your behalf in case you become incapable of making such decisions for yourself in the future.
Why should I make a Power of Attorney?
A Will guarantees the allocation of your assets based on your desires upon your demise, while a Power of Attorney safeguards your wealth during your lifetime. Having a Power of Attorney is equally vital as having a Will – it’s essential for everyone to possess one.
Is there a limit to how many people I have as my Attorney?
No, there is no limit to the number of individuals you can appoint as your attorney, provided they are at least 16 years of age. However, you need to specify if they should collaborate or act independently when making choices for you.
When does a Power of Attorney start?
You can grant your attorney(s) the power to manage your financial affairs immediately upon registering the document, or you can withhold this authority until you’re mentally incapable of making your own choices. The ability to make welfare decisions can only be exercised when you’re unable to decide on your own well-being.
Can I amend or cancel my POA?
Yes, for as long as you are able to make decisions, you can amend your POA at any time. As long as you have mental capacity you can also cancel your POA at any given time.

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