Executor Compensation and Fees (NS)

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If the will does not specify how executor compensation should be calculated, the executor must follow provincial compensation rules (see NS calculator below).

In Nova Scotia, the executor is known as a "personal representative".

The Nova Scotia Probate Act specifies that a personal representative is entitled to a "just and reasonable" commission, not to exceed 5% of the value of the amount received (i.e., gross assets handled by the executor, plus any estate income).

So, for example, a standard estate with a gross assets of $390,000 and $10,000 in income would generate at most $20,000 in executor fees (i.e., 5% of $400,000).

All else being equal, the larger the estate, the smaller the fee percentage.

The following factors are also often considered in determining an appropriate fee::

  • Complexity of the estate
  • Care and responsibility involved
  • Time required
  • Skill and ability demonstrated by the trustee
  • How successful the trustee was

Note that assets which pass directly to named beneficiaries, such as life insurance policies, are generally not included in these calculations.

A court may allow additional compensation in recognition of extra or specialized work performed by the personal representative. Common interpretations of "extraordinary" include overseeing the sale or lease of real estate, running a business, conducting litigation, preparing tax returns yourself, handling tax audits, and so on.

See Probate Act, SNS 2000, c 31 § 76.

NS Compensation Calculator

EstateExec provides the following executor compensation estimator for NS estates, but please keep in mind that circumstances may vary, and that there may be special situations addressed by local custom or law. By using this estimator, you acknowledge that EstateExec provides any results as informational input only, not as legal advice, and cannot be held responsible for any inaccuracies for, or misunderstandings about, any given estate. See estimation methodology for calculation details.

You can use this calculator now, but if you use EstateExec to help you track the settlement process, it will automatically analyze your estate and suggest a value for the inputs below (you can create an estate for free).

Compensation:  $ -

See also Compensation for general remarks on executor compensation.

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