Probate Applications


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A Grant of Probate is an official document issued by a court that authorises an executor(s) to manage and distribute a deceased person’s estate according to their will.

It validates the will, confirming the executor’s authority to settle the deceased’s affairs, including paying off debts and distributing assets to beneficiaries.

Obtaining a Grant of Probate varies by jurisdiction but typically involves:

  • Applying to the relevant court.
  • Proving the will’s validity.
  • Demonstrating that the applicant is the rightful executor.

Given the procedural complexities and legal intricacies involved in applying for a Grant of Probate, it’s highly advisable to seek the expertise of a probate lawyer.

A probate lawyer can guide executors through the application process, ensure compliance with legal requirements, and help navigate potential disputes among beneficiaries or challenges to the will’s validity.

Engaging a probate lawyer not only streamlines the probate process but also safeguards the executor against legal pitfalls, making it a prudent step in fulfilling one’s responsibilities as an executor efficiently and with legal assurance.

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How to Apply for Probate

Applying for Probate involves several key steps, streamlined for clarity from various jurisdictions, including Victoria, New South Wales (NSW), Queensland, and the UK.

While specifics can vary, the general process includes:

  1. Verification of Eligibility: Confirming eligibility to apply, usually the executor named in the will.
  2. Gathering Necessary Documents: This includes the original will, death certificate, and an inventory of the estate’s assets and liabilities.
  3. Valuation of the Estate: Assessing the value of the estate’s assets and liabilities.
  4. Publication of Notice: Some jurisdictions require publishing a notice of intent to apply for Probate, allowing potential claimants to come forward.
  5. Completion of Application Forms: Fill out the relevant probate application forms, which can vary by location.
  6. Submission of Application: The application, along with the necessary documents and any required fee, should be submitted to the appropriate court or probate office.
  7. Court Processing: The court reviews the application. This may involve a waiting period.
  8. Issuance of Grant of Probate: If the application is approved, the Grant of Probate is issued, empowering the executor to proceed with administering the estate.

Due to the complexity and legal nuances involved, many choose to engage a probate lawyer to navigate the process and ensure accuracy and compliance with legal standards.

How Much Does it Cost to Apply for Probate?

The legal and administrative costs associated with applying for a Grant of Probate are scaled according to the size of the estate.

The cost of Probate in NSW in 2020 will incur the following filing fees from the Supreme Court NSW:

  • For estates valued at less than $100,000, no filing fee applies
  • For estates valued at between $100,000 and $250,000, the filing fee will be $772
  • Estates valued between $250,000 and $500,000 will incur a fee of $1048
  • Estates valued between $500, 000 and $1,000,000 will incur a filing fee of $1607
  • For estates valued between $1,000,000 and $2,000,000, filing costs will be $2141
  • Estates valued between $2,000,000 and $5,000,000 will incur a filing fee of $3568
  • For estates over $5,000,000, the filing fee will be $5948

As a general rule, probate filing costs increase each year, so be aware that these costs may increase as of July 2021.

Sometimes there are additional actions related to the cost of probate in NSW, which will attract their own, additional fees. These may include:

  • Filing the accounts of the deceased estate
  • Obtaining a certified copy of the will or grant of Probate
  • Depositing the will with the court for safekeeping
  • Contesting a probate application


    Frequently Asked Questions

    When Does Probate Apply?

    Probate is required when a person dies, leaving behind assets in their name alone, and there is a need to transfer ownership or access these assets. It is particularly necessary if the deceased has left a will specifying an executor to manage their estate.

    Who Can Apply for Probate?

    In most cases, the executor named in the deceased’s will is the one who can apply for Probate. However, if there is no will, or the named executors are unable or unwilling to act, a close relative can apply for a similar authority called Letters of Administration.

    What Documents Are Needed to Apply for Probate?

    The application to the Supreme Court for Probate will include the following documents:

    • The death certificate
    • The testator’s will
    • A summons for Probate signed by a legal professional
    • A detailed inventory of the estate’s assets and liabilities
    • An affidavit from the appointed executor

    Upon lodging the application with the above documents, a filing fee will apply. This fee is relative to the size of the estate and may be reimbursed by the estate after Probate is granted.

    Where Do You Apply for Probate?

    Probate applications are submitted to the Probate Office or court in the jurisdiction where the deceased person lived or owned property. The specific office or court can vary by country or region, such as the Supreme Court in some Australian states or the Probate Registry in the UK.

    Related Services

    Administering an estate without a will? Our Letter of Administration service makes it easier. We’ll help you handle the legal side smoothly.

    Challenging a will in NSW? Our expert guidance simplifies the process. Trust us to navigate the legal complexities and protect your interests.

    Grant someone you trust the authority to make decisions on your behalf with an Enduring Power of Attorney. Safeguard your interests and ensure your wishes are honored, even if you become incapacitated.