Can my firm sign a contract on behalf of an overseas partner?

My firm is jointly instructed in the administration of an estate by a professional executor who is a partner of the firm and a lay client co-executor. We’re about to exchange contracts on the sale of the deceased’s residence. The lay executor has signed, but the professional executor is temporarily overseas. Can we sign on their behalf?

If the partner has not given a power of attorney, it’s good practice to get their authority in writing to sign the contract on their behalf.

You should inform the co-executor of this and get their agreement.

It’s also advisable to inform the buyer’s solicitor as to what is being proposed, and it’s possible they may ask to see the authority.

If all parties are in agreement, this procedure can be used for the contract.

Both executors should sign the transfer deed in due course.


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.

Have you got a practice question?

Call the Practice Advice Service on 020 7320 5675 or email

The Practice Advice Service is staffed Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.

Maximise your Law Society membership with My LS