It’s not a pleasant prospect, but at some point during your life you will lose a loved one. During this traumatic time, it can be very daunting not knowing what to do or what happens to their possessions and property.
Many people do not know what probate is until they are faced with the responsibility.
So, what is probate?
When someone passes away, their possessions, money and property are known as their estate. What happens to this estate and the processes that are undertaken is collectively known as probate.
Probate is ultimately about managing who gets what from a person’s estate.
Where the deceased has left a Will, it is common for them to appoint someone they trust to sort this out. The legal term for this person is an executor. A ‘grant of probate’ will be applied for and this gives official authority for that person to administer the estate.
However, if there is no Will, the law dictates who is entitled to apply. The rules broadly stipulate that the next of kin is entitled to apply for what is known as a ‘grant of letters of administration’. Sometimes however, it can be complicated working out who is classed as the next of kin in accordance with the law.
The process of applying for these grants and the document you use to manage the estate is referred to as ‘probate’.
You may wish to read;
How a Solicitor can help with Probate?