“When do beneficiaries of a Will get notified?” is a question that family members and relatives ask themselves. They may want to see their entitlements to the deceased’s assets and property. Moreover, they may also want to see if the deceased’s last Will and testament are properly carried out.
People wondering ‘when do beneficiaries of a Will get notified?’ should look for the executor of a Will. The executor of a Will is the person that handles the distribution of assets and properties of a Will. They also keep financial records of a deceased’s estate.
Beneficiaries of the estate have the right to seek court action for improper asset distribution. They may also seek court action if they have entitlements to assets or heirlooms. This article will answer the question ‘When do beneficiaries of a Will get notified?’
When Do Beneficiaries Of A Will Get Notified: The Executor
When talking about ‘when do beneficiaries of a Will get notified’, it’s important to understand the executor’s duties and responsibilities. The executor’s main role is to act according to the Will’s wishes by collecting assets, paying liabilities, and asset distribution.
Moreover, they can also obtain probate of the Will if there is one. Truly, the role of an executor can be difficult and most executors are not professionals like accountants or lawyers. The most common way executors can breach their duty is by delaying probate or delaying asset administration.
Time Limit For An Executor
Executors may find it hard to obtain probate on time and discharge the deceased’s debts. Furthermore, this may cause people to ask themselves ‘when do beneficiaries of a Will get notified?’. Hence, courts have developed the ‘executor’s year’ as a timeframe for them in obtaining probate. The executor’s one-year time frame begins from the deceased’s date of death.
If executors fail to obtain probate and discharge any assets, they must provide a valid reason for the delay. However, executors may also distribute assets and estate at an earlier date without holding back sufficient funds for taxation liabilities. They can also do this when there is a potential claim against the estate and when there are disappointed beneficiaries.
In certain cases, executors may have a right of indemnification against the estate. This way they may be able to recover money that has been overpaid to beneficiaries. Yet, if the executor is unable to recoup these monies, beneficiaries or other claimants have missed out on potential claims.
Executors have a contractual duty to act in the executor’s best interests. Thus, executors should not act in such a way that is in conflict with these interests. If there are conflicts of interest, it’s possible for beneficiaries to apply for court orders. These court orders can require an executor to produce accounts of the estate’s administration or the executor’s removal.
When Do Beneficiaries Of A Will Get Notified: The Beneficiaries’ Rights
Indeed, it’s difficult and emotionally draining to deal with the death of a relative or close friend. Moreover, beneficiaries should be aware of their legal rights under the Succession Act 2006. This Act will also help beneficiaries understand when do beneficiaries of a Will get notified. The following are key legislations regarding Will in New South Wales (NSW):
The Right To Be Informed Of The Will’s Existence
Beneficiaries have the right to be informed of the Will’s existence. People wondering ‘when do beneficiaries of a Will’ should identify if there’s a Will in the first place. Executors should advise beneficiaries of the Will’s existence and explain what they will inherit and collect.
The Right To Request A Copy Of The Will
Wills are public documents that beneficiaries can access in the Supreme Court of NSW. Beneficiaries in the latest or previous versions of the Will can request a copy of a Will. Close family members and people who may have a claim against the estate can also request a copy of a Will. However, requesting a copy of a Will may come with costs.
The Right To Receive The Inheritance Within A Year
As mentioned, executors have a year to distribute assets to beneficiaries. Unless there are issues with delays in asset distribution, beneficiaries should not wait more than 12 months for the resolution.
The Right To Know If The Will Is Contested
Not every person can agree with inheritance and asset distribution and disputes can arise for many reasons. Contesting a Will is essentially a person questioning the asset distribution in a Will. These people bring this matter to court and convince them that they should have a larger share of an estate.
They may also contest a Will if they believe that they are a potential beneficiary in a Will.
On the other hand, challenging a Will means questioning the validity of a Will. Essentially, beneficiaries also have the right to contest or challenge a Will if necessary. Former spouses, de facto partners, and other dependents have the right to challenge or contest a Will.
Importance Of Seeking Family Lawyers
Beneficiaries may end up in a dispute with an executor who constantly delays asset distribution. Furthermore, it may be unbearable and inconvenient for potential beneficiaries if they end up waiting for long periods. They may even end up with a Will that needs challenging or contesting after the waiting time.
Hence, it’s important to seek a family lawyer’s advice when thinking of ‘when do beneficiaries of a Will get notified’. JB Solicitors’ family lawyers work hard to fight for clients who are potential beneficiaries of a Will. Should disputes arise, our team can help clients in identifying what’s just and equitable for inheritance and asset distribution.
We also have mediation services for beneficiaries, family members, and dependents who want to come to a peaceful agreement. Indeed, this is a much more cost-effective way of dealing with disputes while avoiding costly court proceedings.
Additionally, our clients can also draft a legally binding Will for clients who want to prevent Will contests and challenges. Our family lawyers can also act as executors and ensure proper asset distribution according to the Will’s wishes.
Contact a family lawyer today.