Following your death, your Executor is responsible for the administration of your Estate; this includes calling in the assets of your Estate, attending to payment of debts and liabilities, and distributing the net proceeds to the beneficiaries in accordance with your Will (subject to any direction of the Court).
There are various debts that must be considered in Estate administration:
Funeral expenses may be paid directly from the deceased’s bank accounts upon presentation of a certified copy of the Will and the funeral account to the deceased’s financial institution (however, this will result in freezing the accounts).
Costs of administration of the Estate
The Executor is authorised to engage professionals to complete the necessary works to administer the Estate. In doing so, the Executor personally engages accountants, lawyers, agents and other professionals, and in doing so the Executor is generally entitled to a full right of indemnity from the Estate in relation to the reimbursement of such properly incurred costs as an administration expense.
Aside from funeral, testamentary and administration expenses of the Estate (which take priority to other Estate debts in accordance with the Succession Act 1981 (Qld)), the remaining debts of the deceased and Estate must be paid prior to distribution of the Estate to the beneficiaries.
The Executor is not personally liable for the payment of such expenses, but rather they are borne by the Estate. In the event that the Estate does not have sufficient assets to attend to payment of all such debts, the Estate may become insolvent and be declared bankrupt.
The Executor becomes personally responsible for payment of Estate debts only in the circumstance where administration of the Estate has been completed without the Executor having given proper statutory notice to potential claimants.
If you would like to discuss the administration of an Estate, please contact our team on 07 5574 3560 or via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.