What is probate?

Posted 12 January 2017 by Richard Tinkler

One question I very often get asked as a Solicitor specialising in Private Client law is: ‘what is probate?’  Usually this is asked by executors of estates who have been told by a bank, for example, to obtain a grant of probate in order for them to be able to release monies held in a deceased person’s name.
 
Probate has one of two meanings:
 
  1. Specifically, it is a document that is issued by the Court to grant authority to executors of an estate to enable them to deal with certain estate assets.  For example, to sell a property or to collect the proceeds of a bank account if the balance is over a certain figure, (which will depend on the bank).  So, an executor may wish to take legal advice from a Solicitor in order to obtain a grant of probate.  Obtaining a grant of probate without legal advice is possible; however, this is not always straightforward.
  2. Probate can also mean the process generally of administering an estate.  For example, if someone says they are dealing with probate for their aunt’s estate, then they may well be referring to the process generally of sorting out their aunt’s legal affairs, which could mean ascertaining the value of the estate before a grant of probate is obtained or collecting monies once a grant of probate has been obtained.
If you require a grant of probate for an estate, and want to obtain legal advice, please make an appointment to speak with one of our Solicitors to find out how we can help you.
 
You can also click here to find out more about our Wills and Probate services.
 
This article aims to supply general information but it is not intended to constitute advice.  Every effort is made to ensure that the law referred to is correct at the date of publication and to avoid any statement which may mislead.  However, no duty of care is assumed to any person and no liability is accepted for any omission or inaccuracy.  Always seek specific advice. 

Capron & Helliwell Solicitors offer a range of legal services at the firm’s Stalham and Wroxham offices near North Walsham and Norwich in Norfolk. The firm specialises in areas including family law, conveyancing and private client law including wills and probate. Capron & Helliwell Solicitors offer free family law clinics – please call 01692 581231 for further details or to make an appointment.




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