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Estate Administration - tips and tricks 2023

NZ $90.00
Theresa Donnelly
Legal Services Manager, Perpetual Guardian,
Henry Stokes
General Counsel, Perpetual Guardian,

Authors: Theresa Donnelly, Henry Stokes
Published: 26 July 2023
Pages: 96


Estate administration is a topic you can never get too much of. For one, it is as diverse as the beneficiaries under the estates. For another, it is one of the biggest sources of complaints against lawyers. One of the main causes for complaints in this space is delays in estate administration. You will already be aware of delays within the probates division, which just makes already anxious beneficiaries awaiting distribution more likely to complain. The other area of complaint is fees. There is nothing more likely to cause more gripes than beneficiaries receiving less in their hands at the end of the day than they expected to. It is emotionally fraught. The death of a loved one or a friend is a very difficult time and comes with an almost overwhelming degree of grief, loss and uncertainty. Beneficiaries may be prepared to argue at length over many, many things but fail to appreciate that this may lead to high costs of administration.

This paper builds on a paper presented at the NZLS CLE CPD Day 2023, General Practitioner – Auckland. The importance of the topic is such that it is more than worthy of its own session. However, as a result, some of the material is familiar, with the remainder being new or updated. 

Content outline

  • The minefield of estate administration
  • Surprise, you are an executor!
  • Blended families
  • The value of the independent
  • Early obligations on executors
  • Separation vs dissolution
  • Declaration of family history
  • Further protection
  • Certainty of estate
  • Estates administration basics
  • Potential issues
  • Methodology
  • Prevention?
  • The funeral
  • Intestacy
  • Search for a will
  • Administrator
  • Seperation
  • Minors
  • Documents
  • Who is entitled to take on intestacy?
  • Succession trusts
  • Obligations to advise
  • Executor/administrator obligations
  • Professional fees
  • Understanding the will & obligations
  • Adjusting the will after the fact
  • Practical advice on administration
  • Statutory timeframes & distributions
  • Wrap up
View contents page

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