When a person dies leaving a will, a grant of probate must be obtained from the Registrar of Probates in the Supreme Court. A grant of probate is a court order confirming the validity of the will.
When a person dies without a will, or there is a will but an executor has not been appointed, an application for letters of administration must be made to the Registrar of Probates in the Supreme Court.
The procedure for both is similar and your lawyer can advise you of the requirements.
A grant of probate or letters of administration is required to collect the assets of the estate for the benefit of the beneficiaries.
It will be required for:
- access to the deceased's bank accounts;
- obtaining the title of the deceased's property; and
- the collection, administration and protection of the deceased's property.
A grant of probate or letters of administration provides protection to the beneficiaries. It ensures they are the only ones who will receive the deceased's property. Any challenges to the validity of the will must be heard in the Supreme Court.