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Who Can Be a Will Executor in China?

The decedent may appoint an executor at the time of making the will.

(1) Who can act as a will executor/administrator?

The decedent may appoint an executor at the time of making the will.

After the commencement of succession, the will executor shall be the estate administrator; if there is no executor, the heirs shall promptly elect the estate administrator; if the heirs do not appoint any estate administrator, the heirs shall jointly act as the estate administrator; if there is no heir or the heir gives up the right to inheritance, the civil affairs department or the villagers' committee of the place where the decedent lived before death shall act as the estate administrator.

Where a dispute arises over the determination of the estate administrator, the interested parties may apply to the court for the designation of the estate administrator.

(2) Duties of the estate executor/administrator

The estate administrator shall perform the following duties:

  1. verify and make a full list of the estate;
  2. report the information about the estate to the heirs;
  3. take necessary measures to prevent damage or loss of the estate;
  4. clear the decedent’s claims and debts;
  5. distribute the estate in accordance with the will or the law; and
  6. perform any other act necessary for managing the estate

(3) remuneration of will executor/estate administrator

An estate administrator may receive remuneration in accordance with law or based upon agreement.



Reference: Articles 1133, 1145, 1147, 1149 of the Civil Code



Cover Photo by chantal li ( on Unsplash

Contributors: CJO Staff Contributors Team

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