What is the process of appointing a professional?
The process of appointing a professional executor or trustee is very straight-forward. When you are making or updating a Will, your solicitor will ask who you have chosen to name as executors and/or trustees. At this point you can ask your solicitor if they or their firm will act in this capacity.
You will not need to pay anything for this service at the time of making your Will, but the professional executor or trustee will need to be paid once they have carried out the work involved in administering your estate or trust. They will usually be paid from the estate before it is distributed to your beneficiaries.
Payment for professional executors and trustees is usually on the basis of both an hourly fee and an additional sum based on a percentage of the total value of the estate. At Roche Legal, we charge an appropriate hourly fee based on the experience of the legal professional you’re working with, plus 2.5% of the gross value of cash and assets, and 2% of the gross value of property.
Professional executors can also claim the cost of expenses from the estate, whereas non- professional executors cannot.
Appointing a mix of professional and ‘lay’ executors or trustees
It’s usually recommended that you appoint between two and four executors or trustees.
With this in mind, appointing a professional does not preclude you from appointing friends or family members as well. Appointing one professional trustee amongst a total of four, for example, is one way to provide the other ‘lay’ trustees with the technical support and other benefits that a professional trustee may bring.
If you choose not to appoint professional executors or trustees in your Will, your friends or family members will still be able to seek legal advice from specialist solicitors to help them with carrying out their duties, should they wish to.