Administration By Attorney

administration by attorneyRule 21 (27) provides for the administration of an estate by an attorney.:

“ If a person entitled to administration resides outside British Columbia, administration by attorney, or administration with the will annexed, may be granted to the person or the person’s attorney acting under a power of attorney”.

The attorney need not be a resident of British Columbia, and such a grant generally will not be made to an attorney residing in the same jurisdiction as the donor.


In re Edmundson Estate 1963, 44 WWR 119 (BCSC) , the court commented at page 123 that the case law:

“suggests that if the principal and the attorney are both resident in the same place, the court would prefer the principle be appointed rather than the attorney. In other words, the provision for the appointment of an attorney is an additional right given to the person otherwise entitled to the administration to have an attorney appointed if the residence of the person otherwise entitled out of the jurisdiction makes it difficult for that person to perform his or her duties.”

The grant is limited for the use and benefit of the person who appoints the attorney and until that person applies for administration in British Columbia.


Administration by an attorney might be used when the person entitled to the administration has one or more of the following criteria:


A. Has language difficulties that may prevent him or her effectively handling the estate in British Columbia;

B. May be difficult to contact for the purpose of providing instructions are executing documents;

C. May have difficulty dealing with assets in this jurisdiction ie running an active business.

If there are several persons entitled to the grant, all residents of the jurisdiction, the grant may be made to the attorney of one, but subject to the consent of the others. Such an attorney is not merely the agent of the principal, but is responsible for the due administration of the assets and is liable to be called to account by the persons interested in the estate.

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