The deceased may specifically state in the will that the executor is to be paid for the work of administering the estate. Even if the will makes no such provision, the executor may apply to the court for a commission for the work performed [Administration and Probate Act 1919 (SA) s 70]. Generally a lawyer who acts as an executor will not be entitled to a commission in addition to the normal legal fees for such work.
A legacy or gift to an executor in the deceased's will is usually construed as being dependent on the performance of the executor's duties. If an executor dies without carrying out those duties, the legacy might fail.