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Changing executors.....

Discussion in 'Legal and financial issues' started by piph, Dec 9, 2015.

  1. piph

    piph Registered User

    Feb 4, 2013
    1,530
    Northamptonshire
    In good form yesterday, Mum decided to open up her deed box and have a look at her will, and gave it to me to read. I knew what was in it, of course, she's told me enough times, and it's very straightforward. If she died first then everything to Dad with him as executor. As he died first, then everything to me as the only child. In the event of Dad pre-deceasing her then the appointed executors are 2 (any two) unnamed partners of the firm of solicitors that he used to work for - in a town a long way away from where we all live now. Of course, they will also have to be paid for their services. Mum has decided that she wants me to be her executor instead. She says that Dad sorted out their wills years ago (it's dated 1984) and she doesn't see why they should do it now (Dad died almost 12 years ago), and get paid for doing it.

    Would it need her to make a new will to change the executors, or can she do it as a codicil to her existing will, and have it signed and witnessed by two other people? And, with a diagnoses of dementia, would it even be legal for her to do it now?
     
  2. nitram

    nitram Registered User

    Apr 6, 2011
    18,372
    Male
    North Manchester
    I would be inclined to go for a new will rather than a codicil.

    A diagnosis of dementia does not automatically mean that she has not got testamentary capacity, if there is any doubt it would be best to use a solicitor. As you describe the situation there would be no change of beneficiaries, only the professional executors would loose out.
     
  3. Kevinl

    Kevinl Registered User

    Aug 24, 2013
    4,668
    Salford
    As long as she still has capacity she can do as she likes to her will.
    As Nitram suggests making a new one is probably best and personally I'd get a solicitor to do it. It is just possible (although it sounds very unlikely) that someone may feel they should have been left something and it would be much harder to contest a will done by a solicitor rather than a home done change.
    If she puts you down a the executor then there's no reason why (come the unfortunate day) you can't actually pass it all to a solicitor if you don't want to do it, the difference is you can shop around negotiate a fixed fee which will probably be a lot less than any solicitor appointed as an executor will charge.
    If you do use a solicitor they should contact the old firm and advise them that a newer will exists.
    K
     
  4. sue38

    sue38 Registered User

    Mar 6, 2007
    10,856
    Wigan, Lancs
    Personally I would go for a codicil in these circumstances. That way if there is any doubt about your mum's capacity now the 1984 will is still valid as far as bequeathing her estate to you, and it will only be the appointment of you as an executor which could be challenged.

    You do have to be careful with codicils that you don't inadvertently revoke parts of the original will you want to keep, and the formalities for executing them are the same as wills, so I would consult a solicitor.
     
  5. piph

    piph Registered User

    Feb 4, 2013
    1,530
    Northamptonshire
    Thanks everyone. We'll consult a local solicitor and see what they say first.
     

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