Legal English – Peter’s Pills – Lesson 74 – Personal Representatives

Legal English for Notaries - By Federnotizie

Personal Representatives

Transcript:

What is a personal representative, and when do we use this term?

In the common law system when someone dies they can die testate (con valido testamento) or intestate (senza testamento o senza valido testamento). What they leave in inheritance is called an estate (asse ereditario).

A personal representative is an individual or institution responsible for administering the estate of a deceased person. The term encompasses (comprende) two main types of personal representatives, namely executors and administrators.

  1. Executors: If someone dies testate, they will often indicate their executors in their wills. Executors are tasked with (hanno il compito di) carrying out (eseguire) the terms of the will. Their duties include obtaining a grant (concessione) of probate, which legally confirms their authority to manage the estate. Executors must gather (raccogliere) and value the deceased’s assets, pay any debts and taxes, and distribute the remaining assets according to the will’s instructions.
  2. Administrators: If some dies intestate, or the appointed (nominati) executors are unable or unwilling to act (non disposti di agire), an administrator is appointed. This is typically a close relative, chosen according to a statutory order of priority (in base a un ordine di priorità previsto dalla legge). Administrators need to obtain a grant of letters of administration, similar to probate, which authorises them to manage and distribute the estate according to the rules of intestacy.

Personal representatives must act in the best interests of the estate and its beneficiaries. They must maintain accurate records, manage the estate’s finances carefully, and ensure (garantire) that all legal and tax obligations are met (rispettati).

Thank you very much, and see you next time for more Peter’s Pills to improve your legal English.


Read this practical guide to find out more about the roles and duties of Personal Representatives: “A Personal Representatives Guide” (.PDF).


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