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Promoting your services as an executor

I am a sole practitioner specialising in private client work. I would like to promote my services as an executor to clients for whom I draft wills. Am I able to do so? If so, is there any information I should be giving to my clients?

Yes, you may promote your services as a potential executor, however, you must ensure that you provide the client with sufficient information to enable them to make an informed decision about the appointment and its related issues.

Clients should be made aware of the choice available to them when appointing an executor, for example your firm or a lay person, such as a family member or beneficiary.

When promoting your firm’s services as an executor, you should inform the client that such appointment is not compulsory. You should take into account the size and complexity of the estate before promoting your firm instead of a lay executor.

Clients who are considering the appointment of a solicitor or firm as executor(s) must be provided, by the potential executor(s), with sufficient information to make an informed decision about the appointment and its related costs. You must act in your client’s best interests at all times.

If a client is considering naming your firm as an executor you should provide an indication of the likely current costs of both:-

  • i. Carrying out the administration of the estate;
  • ii. Acting as an executor and supervising others doing the necessary work.

You need to inform the client whether the fees are quoted on an hourly rate basis and/or a percentage of the estate.

For more information please see the Law Society's practice note, ‘Appointment of a Professional Executor’.

You should also give some thought to the consequences of your retirement for any executorship that you agree to take on. For more information please see the Law Society's Practice Note, 'Fiduciary roles and retirement or departure from practice by a private client practitioner'.

Have you got a practice question? Call the Practice Advice Service on 020 7320 5675.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information in this article, it does not constitute legal advice and cannot be relied upon as such. The Law Society does not accept any responsibility for liabilities arising as a result of reliance upon the information given.

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