What is probate?

‘Probate’ is the term used when talking about applying for the right to deal with a deceased person’s affairs, called ‘administering the estate’. This passes the authority to deal with the deceased persons bank accounts, unoccupied property, insurance policies etc.

Probate is a process which executors or administrators of an estate get permission to deal with the handling of it. If you are named in a will or are the next of kin, before you can do anything with the assets and liabilities you need a ‘Grant of Probate’ (if there is a will) or ‘Letters of Administration’ if there is no will, from the Probate Registry.

Before the Grant of Probate / Letters of Administration is granted the executors need to provide a fairly accurate estimate of the values of the assets and liabilities of the estate so the sooner the affairs are put in order, the faster probate will be granted.

The Probate Registry will examine the application for probate from the executors, as long as they are happy with it they will prepare an oath for the executors or administrators to sign to say you will deal with the affairs in a right and proper manner.

Once the oath has been signed the ‘Grant of Probate or ‘Letters of Administration’ can then be shown to any party requesting it or releasing money.

Related subjects

Unoccupied property insurance – Insurance for empty property when the householder has died

Unoccupied property insurance for solicitors and estate practitioners – Our exclusive service for probate professionals

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