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HMRC internal manual

Trusts, Settlements and Estates Manual

Legal background to trusts and estates: the end of an administration period

Personal representatives can usually say when they have completed all their duties. Sometimes it is difficult for them to give a precise finishing date.

They prepare a statement of account showing what has come in, and all payments out. Outgoings include debts and expenses, all taxes including Inheritance Tax, and specific bequests. This account may be known as the estate accounts or the account of ascertainment of residue or the account of charge and discharge. The personal representatives then calculate the amount of residue. The person entitled to the residue is known as the residuary legatee.

Normally once the personal representatives are satisfied that they have paid, or hold sufficient funds in the estate to cover, all outstanding liabilities, this marks the end of the administration period. This means that they have taken all steps necessary to complete the administration of the estate and what is left as the free balance in the estate - the residue - has been identified. Refer to HMRC Trusts & Estates Technical Edinburgh any doubts or difficulties about when an administration period ends (TSEM7360).

There is some guidance on administration periods in CG30700 onwards. External customers can find this guidance at