Is the solicitor an executor?

I've recently been reviewing and updating the spreadsheet I have prepared for my two (or so I thought!) executors, which is something I do on a regular basis. It contains several pieces of information that will hopefully make executing my will easier. My two (or so I thought!) executors are both family members. I send them this information so that they can ask questions if needed and I can clarify anything before it's not possible, so to speak. (I don't have any plans to die soon, but you never know what's around the corner).

I pulled out my will just to review it, and noticed something I hadn't noticed before. I've transcribed it below, substituting any actual names and addresses [in square brackets] - everything else is verbatim as stated in the will, including words that are (in parentheses) in the will. Item ONE in the will is a revocation of prior wills, then comes:

"(TWO) I appoint (First) [person A] of [address] and [person B] of [address] and (Second) [name and address of solicitors] to be the Executors and Trustees of this my Will (‘my trustees’)

(THREE) I declare the expression ‘my trustees’ shall where the context so admits include the trustees or trustee hereof for the time being of the trusts of this my Will whether original or substituted."

Am I correct in interpreting this as meaning that I have THREE executors (two family members and the solicitor firm)? If so, that's not what I intended ...

(Nearly) dunroving

Replies

  • tightauldgittightauldgit Forumite
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    I read that to mean that you appoint the two people named as executors and the solicitors as fallback in case the people named first are unable to do it. Could be wrong though - IANAL.
  • user1977user1977 Forumite
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    Yes, that wording suggests they are all executors.
  • TBagpussTBagpuss Forumite
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    Yes, that wordingprovides that they are all executors. If it was a substituiton it would say so -. priobably something along the lines of  'I appoint [name] and [name] to be the executors.[... ] in the event that either of my executors predeceased me or is unwilling to unable to act I appoint [firm] in the palce of any executor who has predeceased me or is unable to act' (Wording is only an approximation bt it would be along those general lines.

    All posts are my personal opinion, not formal advice Always get proper, professional advice (particularly about anything legal!)
  • Keep_pedallingKeep_pedalling Forumite
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    I am not 100% sure about this as I don’t know if the use of first and second actually donates primary and secondary executors, but if all three were joint executors why would you even separate them out as first and second. 

    The question needs to be answered by the original solicitor.
  • dunrovingdunroving Forumite
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    Thanks, all. I'll contact the solicitors. Having read this forum for several weeks now, I really prefer NOT to have a solicitor named as an executor. I've come across a few threads where the solicitor was (a) charging a lot of money to do mundane executor tasks, and/or (b) just being tardy, and because they are the executor, co-executors are not in a position to fire them or replace them (if I'm understanding correctly).

    I'd rather have my executors in a position where they can pay a solicitor for advice or help if needed, but not have to accept a solicitor as co-executor.

    The solicitors in question are McClure. Their TrustPilot reviews are pretty poor, which is another reason I'm a bit antsy about the situation. Can't understand why I didn't spot this before.
    (Nearly) dunroving
  • dunrovingdunroving Forumite
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    dunroving said:
    Thanks, all. I'll contact the solicitors. Having read this forum for several weeks now, I really prefer NOT to have a solicitor named as an executor. I've come across a few threads where the solicitor was (a) charging a lot of money to do mundane executor tasks, and/or (b) just being tardy, and because they are the executor, co-executors are not in a position to fire them or replace them (if I'm understanding correctly).

    I'd rather have my executors in a position where they can pay a solicitor for advice or help if needed, but not have to accept a solicitor as co-executor.

    The solicitors in question are McClure. Their TrustPilot reviews are pretty poor, which is another reason I'm a bit antsy about the situation. Can't understand why I didn't spot this before.
    Have just discovered that McClure Solicitors went into administration in 2021! I guess that answers the question of whether they are executors of my will - but where is my will now? They held the original ... I'm thinking that as it is free wills month, it might be just as well for me to draw up a new will.
    (Nearly) dunroving
  • Keep_pedallingKeep_pedalling Forumite
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    dunroving said:
    dunroving said:
    Thanks, all. I'll contact the solicitors. Having read this forum for several weeks now, I really prefer NOT to have a solicitor named as an executor. I've come across a few threads where the solicitor was (a) charging a lot of money to do mundane executor tasks, and/or (b) just being tardy, and because they are the executor, co-executors are not in a position to fire them or replace them (if I'm understanding correctly).

    I'd rather have my executors in a position where they can pay a solicitor for advice or help if needed, but not have to accept a solicitor as co-executor.

    The solicitors in question are McClure. Their TrustPilot reviews are pretty poor, which is another reason I'm a bit antsy about the situation. Can't understand why I didn't spot this before.
    Have just discovered that McClure Solicitors went into administration in 2021! I guess that answers the question of whether they are executors of my will - but where is my will now? They held the original ... I'm thinking that as it is free wills month, it might be just as well for me to draw up a new will.
    Another solicitor will have been appointed to manage things like stored wills and you can find out who that is through the SRA. https://www.sra.org.uk/
  • edited 13 December 2022 at 5:46PM
    Boat_to_BoliviaBoat_to_Bolivia Forumite
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    edited 13 December 2022 at 5:46PM
    If another Solicitor has been appointed, would the OP still need to have their Will amended in order to remove the replacement solicitor as an executor? 

    Or is the new Solicitor merely storing the original Will?
  • dunrovingdunroving Forumite
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    If another Solicitor has been appointed, would the OP still need to have their Will amended in order to remove the replacement solicitor as an executor? 

    Or is the new Solicitor merely storing the original Will?
    I've just contacted the firm that now has McClure's files (Jones Whyte). I've also found the following:

    "The firm of McClure Solicitors ceased trading on this 29th April 2021, and all client files and funds held by McClure Solicitors were then passed to Jones Whyte LLP, a Glasgow-based law firm.

    Jones Whyte LLP is now authorised to act on behalf of the existing professional Trustees appointed in those Trust Deeds prepared by McClure Solicitors."

    - I take it from the latter statement that Jones Whyte has in law replaced the role of McClure, so I'm guessing I will need to get my will rewritten. Thankfully, it's pretty straightforward.

    (Nearly) dunroving
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