The one audit you definitely can’t afford to fail…

31-October-2019 Contested Wills By admin

So as you have probably gathered from our last article ‘How being a nice person may finally do your wallet some good’ the role of an Executor is an important one that involves carrying out many duties and responsibilities to ensure that the Estate of your deceased love one or client is administered successfully and in accordance with the rules of the Court.

As an Executor , it is your responsibility to ensure that you pass and verify the accounts of your deceased loved one or client’s Estate…

What does this mean you may be wondering? Passing accounts means that a Registrar of the Supreme Court of New South Wales basically steps in as an auditor of the accounts of the Estate once those accounts have been prepared by the Executor – you.

Without being too dramatic, this is probably one of the most important audits that you will have to pass in your lifetime. The best way to ensure that you have successfully prepared the Estate to be audited by the Court is to:

  • Keep detailed and accurate records of all of the Estate’s dealings;
  • Keep receipts and copies of all proof of payments made out of the Estate monies (for example funeral expenses);
  • Keep receipts and copies of all proof of payments made into the Estate (for example, return of bank accounts); and,
  • Don’t run out of time*

In some circumstances, the time to pass and verify accounts is 12 months after Probate or Letters of Administration have been granted by the Court.

If you think you may be out of time, or if you are simply not sure what the requirements are, you should speak with your Solicitor who can help you with this.

What does passing and verifying accounts look like?

  • A Cash Statement of receipts of the Estate, with each receipt presented in the following way:
    • Be numbered in date order
    • Identity the person from whom the money has been received;
    • The date of receipt; and
    • The amount received.
  • A Cash Statement of expenditure of the Estate, and each payment should state:
    • Payee of the money expended;
    • Date of the payment;
    • Nature of the payment; and
    • Amount expended.

Given that there is no approved specific template to pass and verify accounts with the Court, it will be difficult for you to tackle this on your own – that’s why we recommend you chat with one of our experienced Solicitors at Streeterlaw who has prepared Estates for this audit many times before. They will be able to help you complete the necessary forms which may include an Affidavit Verifying Accounts from you as well as a Notice of Motion for an Order Passing Accounts.

The Estates Team at Streeterlaw will be happy to help guide you through the process of Passing and Verifying Accounts – get in contact with us today to make this very important audit a lot easier than it may appear to be! Call us on 02 8197 0105.

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