Do I need a Solicitor when somebody dies?
You may find yourself appointed as an Executor within a Will, or may have a friend or relative who has died Intestate (i.e. without a Will). Administering an estate can be a complex process at a difficult time.
If you make a Will then it is usual that provision is made for the appointment of an Executor(s) who are, upon your death, responsible for dealing with your estate. This will involve applying for a “Grant of Confirmation” to the Sheriff Court which gives the Executor(s) the legal power to administer your estate. Thereafter, your Executor(s) will pay all taxes due on your estate (e.g. Inheritance Tax) plus any other debts as well as ingathering all assets such as bank accounts, stocks and shares, surrendering life policies and selling any house or other property that you owned. Once all such assets have been ingathered by your Executor(s), they will then distribute to the beneficiaries of your estate as per your Will.
If you have not made a Will and you die “Intestate”, Executors will still need to be appointed to administer your estate. Such Executors are appointed in accordance with Intestacy Laws for which you should seek advice as to whom the relevant person(s) are to do this. We can act on your behalf and make an appropriate application to the relevant Sheriff Court for you to be appointed as an Executor. In this scenario, before being able to apply for a "Grant of Confirmation" you will need to apply for an insurance policy known as a "Bond of Caution". We can assist you in all these matters at a difficult time.