Insight

Executor & Inheritance Insurance Solutions

Published

Lawyers engaged in estate work will be familiar with unexpected difficulties or delays that can arise when administering an estate.

There are a range of issues, such as a will being challenged or missing beneficiaries, that can complicate and protract the process, adding further stress and upset to families and others involved.

Did you know that there are insurance options available to respond to many of the scenarios you will encounter? DUAL Asset can assist with insurance solutions that provide protection and allow distributions to take place.

Kate Thorp is the Manager of the Executor and Inheritance Protection team for Dual Asset and has over twenty years’ experience in this specialist area.

Kate explains:

DUAL Asset’s policies can provide protection for the personal representatives, the beneficiaries and their legal advisors in perpetuity and for a single premium.

Here are examples of the types of cover DUAL Asset can offer, covering both personal representatives and beneficiaries:

Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975/Early Distribution insurance 

Covers beneficiaries, including charities, who may be seeking a distribution before the expiry of the 10 month period. By way of example, this could be useful to allow a beneficiary to buy a house, or mitigate a tax bill for the estate.

Section 27 Notice

Useful where a decision is made that an advertisement will not be placed in order to speed up the distribution of an estate. The cover will protect the personal representatives and beneficiaries, from claims from unknown creditors.

Missing Beneficiary Insurance

Available on a precautionary basis, or where there is a known missing beneficiary. Dual Asset can consider cover for small estates, where there are limited funds available to carry out research into one side of the family tree.

Missing Will Insurance

Available on a precautionary basis or where there is believed to have been a will, but it cannot be located.

Comprehensive Insurance

12 risks insured under one policy for intestate and testate estates and available for all UK regions and Ireland. As the name suggests, this provides cover for a range of risks such as a will being challenged, proprietary estoppel claims, Inheritance Act claims, missing will and missing beneficiary claims.

Legal Rights

Available for Scottish executries to respond to claims from unknown or missing children, or an unknown spouse. An example could be where there is an accusation the deceased fathered a child many years ago and specific details of this child are unknown to trace them.

Will Challenge

Cover may be available where there has already been a claim on the estate. Perhaps a disgruntled relative or friend of the deceased, who expected to benefit, has stated they intend to challenge the will, but have not substantiated their “claim” over many months, or even years, and the distribution of the estate is being held up.

Identity Fraud

Provides protection where it is not possible to verify absolutely the identity of beneficiaries abroad, perhaps because the authenticity of identity documents cannot be proved.

Forfeiture Rules

Cover responds where someone has been convicted of the killing of a person, but then successfully appeals their conviction and makes a claim on the deceased's estate.

Unknown or Historic Tax Liabilities

Addresses the situation where an estate may be subject to an unknown or historic matter. Perhaps there is a concern there may be unpaid income tax from many years ago and a risk HMRC may raise an enquiry in the future, despite having agreed the account.

The administration of estates can be complex and executors often face making decisions that involve what can be significant levels of risk. Solicitors have a duty to warn executors appropriately in these situations. Advising them of the availability of Executor and Inheritance insurance to respond to a risk will be important in ensuring that their duty is discharged. A failure to do this in circumstances where the estate and/or executors then incur a loss could prompt a claim against the solicitor’s professional indemnity policy that was entirely avoidable.

For more information regarding the Executor and Inheritance cover that is available, or to discuss any particular case where are seeking assistance, please do not hesitate to contact Kate Thorp at Dual Asset.

Kate Thorp, Dual

Kate Thorp

Inheritance & Estate Protection Manager, Dual Asset

[email protected]

+44 (0)7519 129136


This article is provided by Dual Corporate Risks Limited (“Dual”), a Howden Group Holdings company, and the opinions and views stated in this article are those of Dual and not Howden Insurance Brokers Limited. Howden Insurance Brokers Limited shall not (i) owe or accept any duty, responsibility or liability to you or any other person; and (ii) be liable in respect of any loss, damage or expense caused by your or any other party’s reliance on this article.