A Complete Guide to Probate and Letters of Administration in NSW

Following a person’s death in NSW, either a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration application must be lodged for a person to be legally appointed the responsibility to:

  • Access finances, assets and belongings 
  • Distribute the estate as intended, and
  • Carry out any requests and wishes outlined in the Will. 

Our guide will explain and instruct you on how to:

  • Successfully submit a Grant of Probate Application, and
  • Apply for Letters of Administration where required

Minimum Documents required – NSW Probate Application

A number of documents are required to submit a Grant of Probate application in New South Wales. Additional documents other than those stated below may also be requested by The Supreme Court before a grant is finalised.

You’ll need to obtain the following documents:

  • Summons for Probate (Form 111)
  • Grant of Probate (Form 112)
  • Inventory of Property (Form 117)
  • Affidavit of Executor (Form 118)
  • The Original Will 
  • The Original Death Certificate.

Filing for a Grant in NSW – Processes for Probate & Letters of Administration

Probate Application in NSW

A Grant of Probate application must be filed when a person dies leaving a Will including a nominated Executor. Required documentation is submitted to the Registry following an assessment and decision made by The Supreme Court of NSW.You’ll need to wait to be granted Probate before you’re allowed to distribute the deceased’s estate.

Who can apply for a Grant of Probate in NSW?

Grant of Probate applications are to be lodged by the Executor(s) to the Will only.

Letters of Administration Application in NSW

A person may need to apply for Letters of Administration in NSW following a person’s death where either the person died:

  • Without leaving a Will at all, or
  • Leaving a Will without nominating an Executor, or 
  • An Executor was named but has since deceased or no longer has the capacity to take on the role of Executor.

Who can apply for Letters of Administration in NSW?

A Letters of Administration application can be lodged by one or multiple people when a mentioning of an Executor to distribute an estate is non-existent. While anyone can apply, the most suitable applicants are generally:

  • A spouse
  • Children
  • Siblings, or
  • Another close relative or family friend

The Supreme Court of NSW will determine a ‘suitable person’ to distribute the estate based on the circumstances involved with the application.

Important Things to Note – NSW Applications

The Executor to the Will must submit a ‘Notice of Intended Application’ to the NSW Online Registry prior to applying for a Grant. 14 days must also lapse before an application for Probate or Letters of Administration can be lodged.Processing times are approximate and are subject to a number of circumstantial factors.

How long should I wait to file a Grant application in NSW?

You should apply for either a Probate or Letters of Administration grant as soon as possible. The Supreme Court of NSW requires you to file your application within 6 months of a resident’s death.You may be exempt from this time frame if a genuine and eligible reason can be provided for a delay.

How do I file for Probate in NSW?

1. Obtain all documents required from the Supreme Court of NSW Registry

2. Use the following documents to provide all information required by The Court of NSW:

  • Summons for Probate
  • Grant of Probate, and
  • Inventory of Property

3. Attach the Affidavit of Executor and annex the:

  • Death Certificate 
  • Original Will

4. You’re ready for filing! Submit your application to the Probate Registry and await a response, requisition request or a final decision on your Grant.

How do I file for Letters of Administration?

1. As the deceased’s closest next of kin you’ll need to prepare the following documents:

  • Summons for Probate
  • Grant of Probate, and
  • Inventory of Property

The next of kin hierarchy is as follows: 

  • Spouse
  • Children 
  • Grandchildren
  • Parents
  • Siblings

2. Attach the Affidavit of Executor and annex the:

  • Death Certificate 
  • Original Will

3. You’re ready for filing! Submit your application to the Probate Registry and await a response, requisition request or a final decision on your Letters of Administration grant.

What does it cost to file for a Grant in NSW?

You may be required to pay several fees when applying for a Probate or Letters of Administration grant in NSW including:

  • Probate & Letters of Administration Fees - A fee for publishing your ‘Notice of Intended Application fee
  • ’A one-off filing fee – determined by the gross value of the estate below:

Estate Gross Value

Fee

<$100,000

$100,000 - $249,999

$250,000 - $499,999

$500,000 - $999,999

$1,000,000 - $1,999,999 

$2,000,000 - $4,999,99 

$5,000,000>

$0

$761

$1,033

$1,583

$2,109

$3,515

$5,860

When will I have a decision regarding my Grant in NSW?

Probate and Letters of Administration applications vary and depend on personal circumstances, special considerations and a range of other complexities involved with a person’s death.Waiting periods for Grants in NSW are generally between 2-6 weeks from the date The Court receives the application.

Answering Requisition Requests in NSW

Oftentimes issues arise regarding Probate and Letters of Administration grant applications. These problems need to be rectified through means of answering a requisition and are commonly due to:

  • Errors made on forms
  • Discrepancies relating to details, or
  • Failing to supply the correct/sufficient documentation

What happens if there’s issues with my application in NSW?

The Court will notify you and request a requisition to amend any issues, clarify or confirm details, provide further documentation or for a number of other reasons until the application is satisfactory.

As requisition requests generally delay processing times, its crucial to ensure initial applications are correctly filed.

Disclaimer: The content of this blog is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. This blog should not be relied upon as legal, financial, accounting or tax advice.