Deceased Estates & Inheritance Claims Articles

When a property is held ‘jointly’ with a deceased, an Application to Register Death by Survivor document is required to transfer the property into the surviving tenant’s name. The Application and a copy of the Death Certificate are lodged with the Lands Titles Office with the basic registration fee. The Certificate of Title is no… Read more »

If the executor named in a Will cannot act or is unwilling to act and there is no provision for a substitute executor, the question arises as to who can apply for a Grant of Administration (Probate or Letters of Administration) to administer the estate in the original executor’s place? What if the Will does… Read more »

In the case of Mead v Lemon [2015] WASC 71 handed down 26 February 2015 by Master Sanderson in the Western Australian Supreme Court the deceased’s daughter was successful in having her $3 million inheritance increased to $25 million. The deceased’s estate in this matter may have exceeded $1 billion but the amount in dispute was… Read more »

Sometimes after an older person dies it becomes apparent that there has been a transfer of property or other assets belonging to the vulnerable older person to another party for nil or less than market value.  Family members not involved in the transaction may wish to explore reversing it.  What remedies are available to the… Read more »

Often I am asked what happens to a Will once it has been executed. Many people have an expectation that there is some central storage area or register of Wills. In fact this is not the case and the storage of a Will is entirely in the hands of the willmaker. So well may you… Read more »

A claim can be made under the Inheritance (Family Provision) Act, 1972 (“the Act”) (known as an Inheritance Claim) on the basis that the Will maker failed to provide for a family member in their Will where they had a moral obligation to do so. We are often asked what can be done to avoid… Read more »

A claim can be made under the Inheritance (Family Provision) Act, 1972 (“the Act”) (known as an Inheritance Claim) on the basis that the Will maker failed to provide (or to adequately provide) for a family member in their Will where they had a moral obligation to do so. Section 6 of the Act sets… Read more »

In a recent decision of the Supreme Court of South Australia (Mullins-Trnovsky v Adams [2014] SASC 116) his Honour Justice Gray confirmed that the Court has the power to remove an executor by amending the grant of probate however where there are compelling reasons it is appropriate to continue with the traditional practice of removing… Read more »

A Grant of Probate from the Supreme Court will generally be required for an executor to deal with the assets of a deceased. Obtaining a Grant involves proving that the last Will of the deceased is valid by producing it to the Court. Where a person dies without leaving a Will, then a Grant of… Read more »

The legal term for dying without a Will is “dying intestate”.    My experience is that intestacy can add to a family’s burden and often leads to additional confusion as to what needs to be done and who is able to do it.  There is also a misconception that if someone dies without a Will… Read more »

Executor’s Commission Available in Certain Situations Being an executor of a deceased estate can be a large amount of work and take significant amount of the executor’s time and effort to make sure everything is done correctly within a reasonable timeframe.  Where the executor is also a beneficiary this  is not normally an issue but… Read more »

It is not always necessary to obtain a Grant of Probate.  Probate will generally be required if the deceased owned: real property (land) assets worth more than $20,000; or assets with an institution (e.g. a bank) that requires a Grant of Probate before releasing the assets. It is important to remember that when we talk… Read more »

The loss of a family member is always a sad time, but it may become an even more distressing experience if you find that you have not been included in the deceased’s Will. Sadly, we have seen occasions where an elderly parent has been taken to a solicitor to change their Will, usually to the… Read more »

An executor is the person(s) or organisation chosen to carry out the terms of a will.  The executor is responsible for the administration and control of a deceased estate until the final distribution of assets is made to the beneficiaries. The executor must first locate the deceased’s last will and contact the beneficiaries as soon… Read more »