The executor or the person who administers an intestate estate might be paid for acting as the personal representative. The amount of payment is based on the gross aggregate value of the estate, including capital and income, and might include an annual care and management fee.
The annual care and management fee is available if the will is silent on payment to the executor, or if there is no will.
If the will gives something to the personal representative as a beneficiary, then that gift may be presumed to be in lieu of remuneration, unless the will specifically says that the personal representative may take the gift and also be paid for acting as executor.
If the will specifies how much the executor should be paid, then the will governs, and the amount payable is limited to the amount specified in the will.
If no amount is specified in the will, s.88 of the Trustee Act sets out an upper limit for how much an personal representative may be paid:
- 5% of the gross aggregate value of the capital of the estate;
- 5% of the income earned during the administration; and
- An annual “care and management fee” of 0.4% of the average market value of the assets
These figures are maximums; personal representatives are commonly entitled to 3% of the income and capital of the estate, as well as the care and management fee.
A court or registrar determines the actual amount based on:
- The magnitude of the estate;
- The care and responsibility involved;
- The time spent in the administration;
- The skill and ability displayed; and
- The success of the end result.