Will I Need To Apply For A Grant Of Probate?

A Grant of Probate is recognition from the Supreme Court that a will is valid and that the person or people named in the Grant are authorised to deal with the estate. If the deceased doesn't have a will an application for a Grant of Letters of Administration can be applied for by a lawyer of your choice. Below we've listed our 10 most frequently asked questions about applying for probate.

Grant of probate

1. What is a Grant of Probate?

We like to think of it like receiving a stamp or ticket from the Supreme Court to say the will is the final valid will of the deceased, and that the person or persons named in the application (executors) are approved to deal with the deceased person's estate.

If the deceased person didn't leave a will, a Grant of Letters of Administration is applied for and the estate is distributed according to the laws of intestacy.

2. Does everyone require a Grant of Probate or Grant of Letters of Administration?

Small estates where there is no real estate, nursing home Refundable Accommodation Deposit (RAD) or other significant assets may be able to be finalised without a Grant. This means the executor named in the will can carry out the terms of the will or under intestacy laws without approval from the Supreme Court (please check this with us, or another lawyer, before proceeding with any estate administration).

Your Estate Lawyer can advise if you require a Grant. Simply book an obligation free phone call with our Estate Administration team using the link below.

3. When do you require a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration?

If there is real estate, the value of the deceased's assets is substantial, or the organisation holding the assets (ie nursing home deposit, financial institution etc) requires the executor to be approved by the court before transferring ownership.

4. Can I apply for a Grant of Probate myself?

Submitting an application to the Supreme Court isn't a simple process. We highly recommend you employ a lawyer to act on your behalf.

Following approval you can administer the estate (ie call in assets, pay off bills or debts and distribute any residual monies or assets to beneficiaries) yourself or you may wish to employ a lawyer to do your posthumous administration for you as it can be a long and frustrating process.

5. Do I have to use the lawyer who wrote the will to apply for th Grant of Probate?

It's a commonly held belief that you have to use the lawyer who prepared or is holding the original will (top marks for marketing!) but the truth is you're free to choose any lawyer you like to administer a will or apply for a Grant on your behalf.

That does not apply if a particular lawyer, trustee company or Public Trustee is nominated as the executor of the estate in the deceased persons will.

At Your Estate Lawyer we believe getting an alternative set of eyes on a will you've been asked to administer is a great way of making sure you're happy with what you're being asked to do, before moving forward with a Grant of Probate and administering the estate.

6. What will I need to apply for a Grant of Probate?

We will work with you to collate all the information required to submit an application.

You will need to provide us with the original death certificate, along with details of both the assets and liabilities of the deceased person. This can take a while to gather if the deceased hasn't left you a tidy box of 'life admin'.

7. How long does it take to obtain a Grant of Probate?

It can take several months for us to collate all the information required before submitting the application and then the Court can take up to 8-weeks to issue a Grant. Unfortunately it's not a quick process.

8. Can I sell assets before getting a Grant of Probate?

Large amounts of money and assets such as land cannot be transferred or sold without approval from the Supreme Court - this is to protect the executor, the willmaker and the beneficiaries. However you can start the process of selling a property or land subject to receipt of the Grant of Probate. We recommend you get legal advice before proceeding with any of these activities.

Financial institutions, aged care organisations, and share registers will not release funds without receipt of a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration.

9. How much will it cost to apply for a Grant?

At Your Estate Lawyer we offer our services on a fixed fee basis.

Our fee to meet with you to review the will, scrutinise the death certificate, prepare an assets and liabilties register and prepare your application for a Grant of Probate starts at $1,870 (inc gst) *

In addition the Supreme Court charges a filing fee dependent on the value of the estate. A fee schedule can be found HERE.

* our fees may be higher if supporting documentation, supporting evidence or affidavits are required. 

10. What's the next step?

Handling the after death tasks can be overwhelming and confusing, which is why we're committed to making the process as calm and easy for you as possible. The first step is to make a time to chat to Fiona or Lauren using the link below. We'll find out more about the estate you've been tasked with and make a personalised plan to help you move forward.

Scroll to Top