The Administration Act WA (1903) sets out many of the rules which executors must abide by in managing an estate. If you are not familiar with the Administration Act (and let’s face it, not everyone is!) here are 5 important things you should be aware of:
- The Administration Act gives the Supreme Court of Western Australia the power to make a grant of Probate where a deceased person leaves property in WA.
- Probate may be granted to one or more of the executors named in a Will with leave reserved for the non-applying executor to make a later application.
- If a named executor does not apply for probate within 2 months from the death of the testator, or if the executor cannot be found, then the Administration Act allows for “any person interested” in the estate to apply to become an administrator in place of the named executor.
- Executors who have been granted probate have a duty under the Administration Act to file an inventory of the estate of the deceased and pass the accounts of the estate at the Supreme Court of Western Australia.
- If you are an executor of a Will that does not properly dispose of all of the assets of the estate, then the Administration Act provides a fixed formula to deal with the division of the additional assets.
The Administration Act can be complex to interpret. If you are the executor of an estate and feel that any of the above apply to you or if you are unsure about the meaning of any of the above points then you should seek legal advice.