When someone dies, often they will leave behind assets and property, and debts that need to be managed and finalised.
The assets left behind when someone dies are collectively referred to as their 'estate'.
In order to transfer these assets to the beneficiaries of the deceased person's will, an application must be made to the Supreme Court for a grant of Probate. If the person who died did not leave a valid will, the next of kin must apply for Letters of Administration.
Once a grant is obtained, the executor has the responsibility of winding up the estate and transferring the assets to the beneficiaries in accordance with the will, or if there is no will, in accordance with the laws of intestacy.
Probate and Letters of Administration
We can assist you with applying for a grant of Probate (where someone has died leaving a valid will) or we can assist you with applying for Letters of Administration (where there is no valid will).
We can also assist you with applying for Letters of Administration where the executor named in a will has died or does not wish to act as executor (Letters of Administration with the Will Annexed).
We provide the following services:
Application to the Supreme Court for a grant of Probate or Letters of Administration
Executor assistance service - we can provide guidance on the duties of an executor if you choose to manage the administration of the estate yourself once the grant has been obtained
- Administration of Estate - full service from applying for Probate and Letters of Administration to distribution of estate assets to beneficiaries, including property transfers and accounting.
Is Probate always required?
When someone passes away, it is not always necessary to apply for Probate or Letters of Administration.
It is important to first determine the type of assets the deceased person left behind (and whether or not assets including real estate were held jointly with a surviving party).
Banks and other financial institutions will have differing requirements when it comes to releasing assets to the next of kin and a grant may not be necessary if the value of these assets is under a certain dollar amount.
An application for Probate or Letters of Administration is always required where a person has died leaving real estate to be transferred to a beneficiary and there is no surviving Joint Tenant.
We can provide you with advice and guidance on whether or not you need to apply for a grant of Probate or Letters of Administration.