Frequently Asked Questions

A Will is a legal document that outlines your wishes regarding the distribution of your assets after you die. With a Will you get to decide who will manage your affairs and then distribute your assets to your selected beneficiaries. Without a Will the law decides who will manage your affairs and the law determines who will be your beneficiaries. Even more, when you die without a Will and you have minor children it is the Administrator General’s Department who will be in charge of your affairs/assets.
A Personal Representative is the general name given to the person or persons legally appointed to manage your affairs after your death. Where you die testate i.e. with a Will the name given to such a person is Executor/Executrix. Where you die intestate i.e. without a Will the name given to such a person is Administrator. For the most part a beneficiary will not be able to benefit from the assets left behind until a personal representative is appointed and given a document called a Grant which he/she can produce to gain access to the assets of a deceased person.
Whilst you need not tell anyone that you created a Will, you should get the consent of your personal representatives (Executors) before you appoint them as such or you should at least tell them so that they are aware. It is also strongly recommended that you store your Will in a safe place where your loved ones will be able to find it or you may choose to release your Will to someone you trust whilst you are still alive for safekeeping. Though rare, some persons may even choose to approach the Island Records Office to have their Will recorded and stored.
Assets are simply items owned by a person. Examples of assets include:
  • Money in the bank or other financial institution
  • Livestock
  • Shares/Stocks/Bonds/Bitcoin
  • Pension
  • NHT Contribution
  • Salary/Unclaimed Vacation
  • Motor Vehicle
  • Personal Tools and Tools used in your Trade
  • Furniture in your home and clothing
  • A Business
It is advised that you create a separate Will to dispose of your assets in each jurisdiction. If you create one Will to dispose of all your assets both locally and overseas it will significantly delay the administration process and may take years before your beneficiaries can legally lay claim to all your assets.
You will need to produce the proof of death by way of a Death Certificate, you will also be asked to produce the Last Will & Testament in the case where the person died with a Will and where the person died without a Will it is advised that you take an inventory of his/her assets and be able to prove relationship to the deceased person.