If you have been appointed as the Executor of a Will and it isn’t a role you wish to take on, then the safest way to ensure you cannot be held responsible for the actions of your co-executors; and to relinquish any ongoing obligations to the estate and the estate’s beneficiaries, is to sign a Deed of Renunciation to formally sever yourself from estate duties.
A Deed of Renunciation confirms to the Probate Registry that the remaining named Executors are apply to apply for a Grant of Representation without your involvement.
Crucially, a Deed of Renunciation is final. Once signed and delivered by you, you will be permanently removed from the role of Executor and will not be called upon for any future responsibilities relating to the estate.
Nor will you be responsible to the estate’s creditors or beneficiaries. Provided you have not already ‘intermeddled’ in the estate administration.
It is important to stress that you can ONLY renounce the role of Executor BEFORE a Grant has been issued naming you in the role.
However, there is an option for you to step aside in a more temporary sense. This is known as ‘Power Reserved’. If you wish to reserve the right to take out your own Grant of Representation at a future date, perhaps if you are unhappy with how the other Executors are acting, then a Deed of Renunciation may not be for you.