What is a grant of representation?
A Grant of Representation is a legal document that provides individuals with the legal authority to administer a deceased person’s estate. There are different types of Grant of Representation, with the most common being:
- A Grant of Probate, obtained when the deceased left a valid will appointing executors
- A Grant of Letters of Administration, obtained when the deceased did not leave a valid will (we recommend that you read our article covering this area)
- A Grant of Letters of Administration with a will annexed, obtained when there is a will but no available executor
A Grant of Representation is not required every time a person dies.
Do I need to apply for a Grant of Representation?
You usually need a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration if the estate consists of: –
- Property owned by the deceased in their sole name or jointly as tenants in common
- Had large amounts of funds in bank accounts
- Owned shares
- Had pension or life insurance policies that do not nominate beneficiaries
Joint property and bank accounts can typically be dealt with by simply providing the relevant organization with the death certificate.
Sole bank accounts can be dealt with using just the death certificate, however, this is at each banks discretion as they all have their own limit that they are prepared to release up to without being provided with a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration.
The starting point is to contact the financial organisations the deceased used to find out their requirements.
If you require information on estate administration, please read our quick guide.
How long does it take to get a grant of representation?
The Probate Registry is the part of court that deals with applications for grants of representation. Tt can take anywhere from 6-18 weeks, depending on how busy they are at any given time. It also depends on the size of the estate and how smoothly the handover of paperwork goes.
Smaller estates are likely to be processed more quickly than larger ones, due to there usually being less factors to consider. Larger estates, especially when inheritance tax is involved are likely to take the longest amount of time.
How Mark Reynolds Solicitors can help
At Mark Reynolds Solicitors, we provide a comprehensive range of probate services for our clients. We understand that dealing with an estate can seem like a daunting process, and our experienced and professional team can guide you through it. We can administer the estate in full on your behalf and we also offer a fixed fee Grant of Representation only service. Call 01925 418 004 or contact us online to find out more.