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Estate Administration

On the death of an individual, decisions have to be made as to how that person’s property is to be dealt with as well as how that person’s body is to be disposed of.

If there is a will, the process can be relatively straight forward as the wishes of the deceased are set out in the will, in that instance, an application for probate needs to be made to the High Court. There are however situations when this process may not be required. Where a person dies without making a will, he or she is said to have died intestate. In that instance, an application has to be made by one of the persons named in the Administration Act, for Letters of Administration. The estate of a person who dies intestate is distributed in accordance with the order set out in the Administration Act.

Probate and Letters of Administration are simply court stamped documents authorising the person(s) named in those documents to act on behalf of the deceased.