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Deceased Estate

Where Do I Start When Dealing With A Deceased Estate?

It can be an overwhelming feeling if someone has died and you are appointed as the Executor, or otherwise need to sort out what is to happen to the person’s deceased estate. There is a process that needs to be followed to deal with the assets and liabilities of the deceased. When you are grieving, dealing with paperwork and red tape can be the last thing you want to do. 

At Mason Lawyers, our compassionate and experienced Deceased Estate Lawyers can handle most of the process for you. We are happy to speak with you on the phone initially, to provide advice and answer any questions you may have about what needs to happen first. Our Estate Lawyers understand that this can be a difficult time and that some early advice and guidance can be a great help.

What Exactly Does an Executor of a Deceased Estate do?

The Executor’s role begins with making the funeral arrangements and ends when the deceased’s debts and taxes are paid and the assets of the estate are distributed to the beneficiaries named in the will. This can be a stressful process, particularly when you are grieving the loss of your loved one.

We can assist you in that role, by advising on each of the steps that need to occur and taking the steps to finalise the assets and distribute the estate.  

The Will

Most people leave a Will. The Will usually appoints one or more people as the Executor.  It is the Executor who takes charge of the deceased’s assets.  In most cases that will simply involve identifying the assets and anything to which the deceased was entitled (such as the proceeds of superannuation and insurance policies).

If you are not sure where your loved one’s will is held, we may hold it in our safe, or we can help you locate it.

 

What do I do if there is no Will?

Not everyone gets the chance to make a will before they pass away. If a person dies without a will, they die ‘intestate’ and there is a different process that needs to be followed to administer their estate.

If there is no will there will be no executor.  It will be necessary for a person (usually the next of kin) to apply for a grant of letters of administration, which has the same function as probate.

The estate is then distributed to relatives, according to an order of entitlement set out in the Law – contrary to popular belief, the estate does not usually pass to the government if no will exists. 

Don’t worry, we can guide you through this process if there is no Will.

If you can’t come to us, we can come to you.

Our Estate Lawyers will provide you with tailored advice about your loved one’s estate to ensure that you understand your obligations, and can best carry out your loved one’s wishes.

Our Estate Lawyers have dealt with a wide variety of complicated issues in administering estate, including:-

  • Administering family trusts.
  • Interpreting complex wills.
  • Providing specialised taxation advice.
  • Over 20 years of experience handling large and small estates.
  • Charge fees in accordance with the Supreme Court scale of costs.

Contact us for friendly, approachable and compassionate advice with your Wills and Estates needs.

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