If there is a will AND a named executor, the executor must apply for a grant of probate from the Equity Division of the Supreme Court.
An executor may renounce his/her responsibility, in which case the Court will appoint an administrator who is one of the beneficiaries, or the executor has the right to appoint the relevant state Trustee in their place.
To apply for a grant of probate, the executor, or their solicitor, must file specific documentation that must minimally include:
- A summons, signed by the executor and their lawyer
- An affidavit of executor
- The original will
If no executor is named in the will and there is no eligible family member that wants to assume the role of executor, the court will appoint a Formal Administration to oversee the distribution of assets. This, in many cases, is the major beneficiary of the will, and they are tasked with fulfilling its terms.
Your solicitor or What do I do? can help you navigate the process of applying for a grant of probate.