You have made a wise decision of writing your Will.
While a written Will helps speeding up the distribution of your assets to your loved ones, there are instances where the Will execution is delayed due to lack of information or documentary support required for the transfer of some assets.
This Will Execution Handbook not only assists you to prepare in advance all the necessary documents but also comes as a guide to your family members on what they should do at times of execution.
Grant of Probate
It is the duty of your Executors named in your Will to apply for the Grant of Probate. Their names are printed on your Personal Will Card. You may nominate your family members, a trusted friend or a Trust Corporation to be your Executors. Your Executors will need the following documents for application of the Grant of Probate:
a) The deceased’s death certificate from the Registrar of Births and Deaths;
b) Identity Cards/Birth Certificates or Passports of the deceased, beneficiaries, Executors and Trustees;
c) The Will of the deceased.
What are the duties of the Will Executors?
The Will Executors shall administer the estate according to the deceased’s wishes, as expressed in the Will. For this purpose, the Executors shall:
a) appoint a solicitor to act on behalf of the estate to obtain the Grant of Probate.
b) settle all the claims and debts using money from estate
c) arrange for funeral if so, requested by the Will
d) identify and prepare a detailed inventory list of assets
e) invest surplus cash and manage investments as authorized by the Will
f) distribute assets to the beneficiaries according to the Will
g) prepare a complete account statement of the estate’s administration
h) carry out any other instructions contained in the Will.
It is best if you could make a photocopy of the documents listed below and keep it in a safe place. Write down the location of these documents in your Personal Asset Update booklet or inform your Executors their whereabout.
a) Marriage Certificate, if any
b) Your Identity Card/Passport
c) Your children’s Identity cards/Birth Certificates
d) Vehicle Registration Card
e) Employee Provident Fund (EPF) statement
f) Insurance Policies
g) Titles to Properties
h) Company Registration Certificate
i) Central Depository Shares (CDS) statement
j) Credit Cards Statements
k) Bank Accounts Statements and/or Bank Passbook
l) Income Tax Statement
m) Unit Trust Certificate or Statement
1) Bank Accounts
a) The deceased’s passbook
b) Any statements of accounts
c) Original Grant of Probate for verification by bank officer
The Executor may apply to the bank concerned for a copy of account statement to determine valuation before distribution. They will need to produce to the bank certified true copies of the following documents:
a) Deceased’s death certificate from the Registrar of Births and Deaths
b) Identity Card/Passport of the deceased
c) Will of the deceased
2) Safe Deposit Box
The Executors may apply to the bank for examination of the contents in the safe deposit box held under the name of the deceased, by producing a certified true copy of the deceased’s death certificate and the Grant of Probate. They will carry out such examination with the presence of the Bank Officer and the appointed solicitor. After examination of the contents, the Executors shall proceed to make another application to the bank to remove the contents or items in the safe deposit box.
3) Employee’s Provident Fund (EPF)
Where nominees were appointed
The Executors shall apply to the EPF Board for the release of the EPF sum to the named nominees (who are above 18 years old). They will have to produce original copies of the death certificate, marriage certificate (where the spouse is nominee) and children’s birth certificate (where children are nominees) to the EPF officer for verification. For children below 18 years of age, the EPF Board withhold their shares until they attain the said age or pass to the Trustee subject to the approval of EPF. In the event the nominees named by the deceased in the prescribed EPF forms are different from the beneficiary/beneficiaries named in the Will, the names in the prescribed EPF forms shall prevail.
Where nominees were not appointed
The Executors shall produce original copies of the death certificate, marriage certificate, children’s birth certificate and the Grant of Probate to the EPF Board for verification. The EPF sum will be released to the beneficiary/beneficiaries named in the Will after the necessary documentation and procedure are complied with.
4) Insurance Policies
Where beneficiaries were nominated
The nominated beneficiaries can claim any insurance policies under the deceased’s name. The Executor shall produce a certified true copy of the deceased’s death certificate to the insurance company in order for them to release the claim. In the event the nominees named by the deceased in the insurance policy differ from the beneficiary/beneficiaries named in the Will, the nominees named in the insurance policy shall prevail.
Where beneficiaries were not nominated
When beneficiaries were not nominated by the deceased in his Insurance policy, the persons named in the Will shall benefit from the claim.
If the deceased was a sole proprietor of a business, the Executors can transfer the ownership of the said business to the persons named in the Will. The Executors shall inform the Suruhanjaya Syarikat Malaysia (SSM) on the deceased’s death and the transferring of ownership to the new proprietor. In doing so, the Executors must submit certified true copies of the death certificate of the deceased and the Grant of Probate.
If the deceased was a partner in a business, the Executors will have to act in accordance to the Deed of Partnerships (if there is one) and the certified true copy of the Will. If there is no Deed of Partnership, then the Executors will have to adhere to the Partnership Act to administer the Will.
Private Limited Company (Sdn Bhd)
The Executors must notify the Company Secretary of the said businesses about the death of the deceased. They shall submit to the Company Secretary certified true copies of the death certificate of the deceased and the Grant of Probate. The Company Secretary will then proceed with the documentation and procedures of share transferring to the beneficiary/beneficiaries, subject to the shareholding agreement if any.
All instruments of investment such as shares, unit trusts, stocks and bonds held under the deceased’s name can be transferred to the persons named in the Will pursuant to instructions stated in the Will. The Executors will be required to submit the certified true copies of the death certificate of the deceased, the Grant Probate and the investment certificates to the financial institution concerned. They must complete the relevant Transfer forms stating the transfers of ownerships to the nominees.
Where the shares are of listed companies, the Executor shall write to the Malaysian Central Depository Sdn Bhd to notify them of the death of the deceased. The Executor will be required to fill up a transfer form in order to transfer the shares directly to the beneficiaries or in case of indivisible shares, to the Executor or one of the Executors who will later do the necessary transfer from his account to the beneficiary/beneficiaries. For transfer of shares in Bursa Malaysia, there will be some administration charges by Bursa Malaysia.
Vehicles include cars, vans, and motorcycles under the deceased’s personal registration. The Executors should be provided with Information on all vehicles owned by the deceased and the registration cards of the vehicles. The Executors shall inform Jabatan Pengangkutan Jalanraya (JPJ) and deal with the vehicles as instructed in the Will including the sale of vehicles or transfer of ownership to beneficiary/beneficiaries.
8) Immovable Properties
Immovable properties include houses, apartment, condominiums, land, shop lot, etc either solely or jointly owned.
Property with title
Where the deceased has title over the property, the Executor will require certified true copies of the death certificate of the deceased and property title. If the property charged to a bank, the Executors will require the charge documents. The Executors shall appoint solicitors to execute the transfer of the property with title to the beneficiary/beneficiaries according to the Will.
Property without title
Where the deceased has property that does not have an individual title, the Executor will require the death certificate of the deceased and Deed of Assignment.
The Executors shall follow instructions set out in the Will to deal with the properties. Any mortgages or loans outstanding must be settled before the property being transferred to the beneficiary/beneficiaries, using money from the deceased’s assets.
9) Income Tax
To check on the outstanding income tax amount owed by the deceased during his lifetime, the Executors must first submit a clearance letter to Lembaga Hasil Dalam Negeri (LHDN) notify them about the death of the deceased and attach a certified true copy of the death certificate for verification. The LHDN will later inform the Executors on the outstanding income tax amount payable by the deceased. The Executor must then complete the relevant forms and pay the outstanding tax incurred by the deceased. Upon receiving the outstanding amount, the deceased’s income tax account will be closed.