Jun 10, 2022
How long does an executor have to settle an estate in Ontario?
Settling an estate is a challenging responsibility that can often take between six months to a year in Ontario. Here’s what you need to know.
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Estate executors have a tough job. They have to submit the deceased person’s will to probate court, they have to send out notifications of death, make funeral arrangements, collect and itemize the estate’s assets, and deal with beneficiaries, just to name a few responsibilities. Being an estate executor means you’ve taken on the responsibility of honoring your loved one’s wishes, but that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily done for free. An estate executor is often compensated for their time and efforts, and that compensation is usually set forth in the will and is paid out by the estate. In some cases, an executor’s fee may also be determined by the probate court. Here’s how it goes down:
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Generally, an estate executor in Ontario gets paid 5% of the estate’s value. So if an estate was valued at $250,000, then the estate executor would receive $12,500.
The logic behind that 5% benchmark is as follows:
• 2.5% represent all capital receipts and disbursements
• The remaining 2.5% represents all revenue receipts and disbursements.
However, this percentage isn’t set in stone. If an estate is large but very easy to process because there aren’t a lot of assets, then a 5% fee may be a bit on the higher end of the spectrum. Similarly, if an estate’s value is smaller but there are many complicated assets and the settlement process is spinning out into a convoluted affair, then a higher compensation may be in order. If there are disputes about the fee, then a court may get involved to determine what the appropriate executor compensation is.
There’s also a management fee that executors can claim, in cases where assets weren’t distributed right away and still needed to be managed by the executor before they could be liquidated (think real estate or investments). This fee is 2/5 of 1% of the average value of the assets managed. However, an executor can only claim a management fee if they truly were managing assets for a while before they were distributed.
An estate executor’s fee should be discussed upfront while the estate owner is still alive so that everyone is on the same page and there are no resentments on either the beneficiaries or the executor’s side later on.
If you’re an estate executor and you’re wondering what your next steps should be, then you’ve come to the right place. ClearEstate is the professional partner you need to navigate the responsibilities of an estate executor.