Estate Law Questions? Ask an Estate Lawyer.
A Power of Attorney is basically a grant of power to a person to make legal and financial decisions on behalf of the grantor. Powers of Attorney can be limited in scope to certain activites (buying selling real estate, financial decisions etc.) or can be general (all legal, business, financial decisions). When the grantor of the power dies, the Power of Attorney expires.
An estate executor is someone who handles the decedent's estate at death. They will gather the assets, determine beneficiaries, pay debts, notify creditors and distribute assets as well.
I'm sorry to hear about your parent's passing. When someone dies without a Will they have died intestate. Normally a Will designates the individual to handle the estate at their death, when there is no Will intestacy laws will apply.
According to the following statute from BC:
(1) If a person dies intestate, or if the executor named in a will refuses to prove the will, the court may grant the administration of the estate of the deceased person
(a) to the surviving spouse of the deceased person,
(b) to one or more of the next of kin, or
(c) to the surviving spouse of the deceased person jointly with one or more of the next of kin,
as to the court seems expedient.
This is the order from which the court will appoint an executor. There is no automatic assumption that you will be executor simply because of your Power of Attorney status.
You are not obligated to serve as executor of the estate if you do not want.
27 (1) A personal representative of a deceased person may at any time apply to the court to be discharged from office, whether as personal representative alone or as personal representative and trustee.
(2) A personal representative may make an application under subsection (1)
(a) whether the person has been appointed executor under a will or administrator by the court,
The court will then appoint a new executor in your stead.
Hope this helps.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).