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Contact Armstrong Legal:
Sydney: (02) 9261 4555
Melbourne: (03) 9620 2777
Brisbane: (07) 3229 4448
Adelaide: (08) 8410 0055
Perth: (08) 9321 5505

Alun Hill

Probate is the process of proving the last will of a deceased person. In short, a Grant of Probate will involve an application to the Supreme Court in the State or Territory in which the deceased held assets.

When a person dies leaving a valid will, it is the role of the executor named in the will to apply to the court for a Grant of Probate. Where a person dies without leaving a valid will, the deceased is said to have died intestate and it is the role of a surviving family member to instead apply for a Grant of Letters of Administration.

Once the court is satisfied that the last will of the deceased has been proved, a sealed Grant of Probate with the will annexed will be returned the executor, who can then begin the process of administering the estate.


To protect the interests of those who hold the deceased's assets, the executor may be asked to prove they are authorised to administer the estate before the assets can be released. The Grant of Probate is the proof required.

The Grant of Probate will confirm that the author of the will has died, the will is authentic and the executor is who they say they are. Once a Grant of Probate has been made, management of the deceased's assets can safely be transferred to the executor.


A Grant of Probate is not always required. Where an estate is small, or the assets are held in joint names, it may not be necessary for the executor to apply for a Grant of Probate.

In circumstances where assets such as joint bank accounts and real estate as a joint tenant, the assets will be transferred to the surviving joint owner by right of survivorship on notification of the death of the deceased.

In situations where account funds are minimal, banks and financial institutions may release assets without the need for a Grant of Probate. Each bank and financial institution will set its own monetary limit for which Probate is required and in some circumstances, even where the funds are minimal institutions may still require a grant to be obtained.

Generally, where the deceased owned real estate as a ‘sole tenant’ or as a ‘tenant in common’ with others, a Grant of Probate will always be required before the property can be transferred.


The Supreme Court in each State or Territory will have its own requirements and prescribed forms for applying for a Grant of Probate. The costs and filing fees will vary between each State and Territory.

For more information on applying for a Grant or Probate, see the article ‘How to Apply for Probate’ in your jurisdiction.

If you are unsure about how to make your Probate application please contact Armstrong Legal on 1300 168 676 as we can assist you.

where to next?

Have you been left out of a Will or treated unfairly? We offer a free assessment of your case and a no win no fee policy. We have a specialist team that deals only in Wills & Estates servicing NSW, VIC, QLD, ACT, SA & WA. The law relating to Wills and Estates can often be complex and confusing so we encourage you to make contact with our team.

Why Choose Armstrong Legal?

Contact Armstrong Legal:
Sydney: (02) 9261 4555
Melbourne: (03) 9620 2777
Brisbane: (07) 3229 4448
Adelaide: (08) 8410 0055
Perth: (08) 9321 5505