Dealing with the affairs of a loved one is daunting at a very stressful and sad time in your life. We provide clear and understandable advice and support during this difficult time to help you get through it.
When a person dies, someone has to deal with their affairs. This is called 'administering the estate'.
If the person who has died leaves a will
If the person who has died leaves a will, it will usually name one or more people to act as the executors of the will - that is, to administer their estate.
If you are named as an executor of a will you may need to apply for a grant of probate.
A grant of probate is an official document which the executors may need to administer the estate. It is issued by a section of the court known as the probate registry.
If there is no will
If there is no will (known as dying intestate) the process is more complicated. An application for a grant of letters of administration (an official document, issued by the court, which allows administrators to administer the estate) will need to be made.
The person to whom letters of administration is granted is known as the administrator. The administrator is the person who has the legal right to deal with the affairs of the person who has died, and is determined by a set order of priority.
The administrator may be a close relative of the person who has died, if there is one. There may be more than one person who has an equal right to do this.
This means executors or administrators. If there is more than one personal representative they must work together to decide matters between them. Disagreements between personal representatives can cause expensive delays.
Responsibilities of personal representatives
Personal representatives are responsible for making sure that the estate is administered correctly. If there is a will, the personal representative must make sure that the wishes of the person who has died, as set out in their will, are followed. If there is no will, you must follow the rules of intestacy (set out in the Administration of Estates Act 1925). You should ask us to explain these.
Dealing with the affairs of a recently deceased loved one can be a very daunting and traumatic experience. If you need help or advice, you should not hesitate to contact us.
If you choose to instruct KK Law to work with you, all aspects of your case will be dealt with by Rob Watson, our Principal and highly experienced Private Client Solicitor who is also a member of Solicitors for The Elderly and a member of The Law Society Private Client Section. We do not use unqualified ‘legal advisors’ or ‘caseworkers’. We are not a ‘factory’ where ‘one size fits all’. We tailor our service to your particular needs.