Probate

supreme court seal grant of probateObtaining a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration for a Deceased Estate can be a daunting task. It is something that most people only ever do once in their life.

It is technically complex and the Probate Registry will not give advice. Most executors will therefore engage a lawyer to assist with the application process. We can also assist with the post-grant distribution process.

We provide our client’s with an Executor’s checklist to work through so that all aspects of the estate are considered. Many of our client’s using this checklist will arrive at the first meeting with a death certificate and all of the other documents and details that are needed. We can then begin drafting the application. This allows us to obtain probate quickly – or at least in the quickest time possible given the inherent delays in the SA Probate Registry !

We advise clients to expect their grant in 6 to 8 weeks from the time the application is filed.

Personal Applications for Probate

As set out on the Courts SA websiteA word of caution before you proceed. A personal application is likely to be far more onerous than your friends and family will tell you.

Making an application for a grant is not simply a matter of filling in forms and paying the fee.

While the forms are available online – so are the Probate Rules – all 44 pages of them.

Executors are personally liable to beneficiaries for the administration of an estate once commenced. Executors are personally liable for estate costs incurred after death , although they are entitled to an indemnity from the estate for any proper estate expenses. This may or may not extend to separate legal representation for joint executors depending on the circumstances.

Inheritance Claims

We can also assist with inheritance claims or potential claims against a Will by disappointed beneficiaries who may wish to contest a Will. Potential claimants against a Will include all persons defined in the Inheritance (Family Provision) Act section 6.