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The Executor of a will is the person named to administer a deceased person’s estate as stipulated in the Will. An Executor can be any person aged 18 or over. Appointing a solicitor to carry out these tasks will make the process less stressful for the deceased’s family.

The administration of an estate typically includes the following elements:

  • Checking funeral arrangements, and establishing whether there is a valid Will or whether the laws of intestacy apply.
  • Ascertaining the assets and liabilities of the estate and obtaining valuations if required; preparing an inventory of assets; drafting the application for Confirmation and associated Inheritance Tax Return; submitting drafts of all forms to the executors for approval; and preparing final versions for signature.
  • Where a full Inheritance Tax Return is required, submitting the necessary Forms to HM Revenue and Customs; raising or borrowing cash with which to pay inheritance tax if necessary; and paying any inheritance tax due.
  • Lodging the Application with the Sheriff Court and obtaining Confirmation.
  • Intimating Confirmation to the asset holders and collecting in the estate; and, where appropriate, negotiating the value of the estate with HM Revenue and Customs on behalf of the executors.
  • Paying the debts of the estate and, where appropriate, adjusting the inheritance tax liability; distributing the estate in accordance with the Will or the laws of intestacy; preparing executry accounts for approval by the executors; maintaining executry records; and generally attending to all work required to complete the administration of the estate.
  • Dealing with income tax and capital gains tax issues relating to the period of administration, including submission of tax returns if required, and provision of tax certificates to beneficiaries.
  • Legal and tax advice to the executors as and when required.


Remember that we will quote you a fixed price for this work.



Do you need a solicitor to assist you in administering the estate of a family member who has died recently? Are you struggling to get a quote that tells you how much you will have to pay for the work involved?

Or have you been offered a fee comprising a percentage of the value of the estate, which does not take into account the complexity or otherwise of the deceased’s affairs? We specialize in fixed fees, agreed in advance, for the administration of deceased estates, giving clarity on exactly what our services will cost you. Our fees are based on our experience of dealing with many other estates.  Obviously, deceased estates are not all the same. Some people have simple affairs with a house and a few bank accounts, others might have a range of investments and perhaps extra properties, or there might be a lot of beneficiaries. Whether or not inheritance tax is payable, and the type of inheritance tax return required, also has a significant effect. After we have had a discussion with you about the estate, we will give you a firm quote, which we adhere to, unless something unexpected comes up at a later stage, requiring additional work, not included in our standard administration service. These occur rarely and we will consult you if they arise.


 Contact us at law@fergussonlaw.com or call us on 0131 556 4044 and ask for Janice, Louise or Amal. 

 or use our website enquiry facility.

Testimonials for our Executries service

Thank you sincerely for your professional service provided to one of my clients this last week or so. My clients have been patiently waiting to purchase a property to which was in the process of probate following a passing.

I introduced Janice to provide independent advice on this for my clients. Within 24 hours Janice had confirmed the root of the lengthy delays the family had been having in relation to the will and further reached out to the estate solicitors confirming the status. As it transpires the property is not in a position to be sold and may be some time away. Thanks to Janice my clients can now move on and broaden their search to find their new home in East Lothian. This type of professionalism and commitment to the highest level of customer’s satisfaction has to be acknowledged. Thank you again Janice!

Marie Johnstone, Wilson Property Group

Thank you Janice for all the hard work and your help in dealing with our Mother’s Estate. At times this has been very emotive and difficult for us all. Thank you for your guidance and support.

Alison, Jonathan, Kieron and Sharon