Understanding the Cost of Probate in Australia in 2023

Cost of Probate in Australia in 2023

Losing a loved one is undoubtedly a challenging time, and navigating the complexities of a deceased person’s Will and estate can add significant stress to an already emotional period. However, securing Probate of a Will is a crucial step to ensure that the beneficiaries receive their entitled assets in accordance with the deceased person’s wishes. Here, we will learn more about the Probate costs in NSW.

What is Probate?

Probate is a legal process where a court grants approval to the executor of a deceased person’s estate to distribute assets as outlined in the last Will. This court order is essential for banks, insurance companies, and other asset holders to release or transfer assets to the executor.

Well-experienced and dedicated solicitors of estate lawyers specialise in providing guidance on the various options and legal avenues available during this challenging time.

Why is Probate Important?

Probate is pivotal because most institutions handling assets demand a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration before releasing or transferring assets to the executor or administrator. This legal proof is required before they engage with the deceased’s assets.

After receiving the Grant of Probate, the executor gains the legal authority to manage and distribute the deceased’s assets in line with the Will. It also serves as protection for the executor against potential legal challenges regarding asset distribution. However, the pace at which the executor presents all the documents will determine how long the Probate will take in NSW.

All Grants of Probate find their place with the corresponding Will at the Supreme Court, making them public documents. It’s crucial to note that Probate granted in a specific jurisdiction only allows the executor to deal with assets within that jurisdiction.

What Is the Time-Frame to Apply for the Grant of Probate?

There are rules about when you need to file probate in court. If you wait more than 6 months after the person’s death to file, you’ll need to explain why you were late. You can do this by writing an explanation in the executor’s affidavit or by filing a separate affidavit called an “Affidavit of Delay.”

What is an Affidavit of Delay?

An Affidavit of Delay is a document that explains why you were late filing probate. There is no special form you need to use, but you can use a similar format to the UCPR Form 40. Write “Affidavit of Delay” at the top and then explain why you were late.

Probate Costs in NSW

Probate costs in New South Wales involve various fees, and understanding these expenses is vital for those navigating this legal process. The fees can include the Probate Advertising Fee, which is $58.00 for publishing an online notice, and the Probate Filing Fee, which varies based on the size of the estate.

AssetsProbate Fees
$100,00 to $250,000$863.00
$250,000 to  $500,000$1,171
$500,000 to $1,000,000$1,797
$1,000,000 to $2,000,000$2,394
$2,000,000 to $5,000,000$3,991

Additional fees may be incurred for services like depositing a Will with the court, scanning or photocopying a Will, amending or re-issuing a grant, and completing a genealogical search for a file. A detailed list of fees associated with Probate in the Supreme Court of NSW can be found here.

Who Covers Probate Costs?

Probate costs in NSW are typically covered by the estate of the deceased. These costs encompass the court’s application fee and the online probate notice fee. If a lawyer is engaged in the application process, additional professional fees may apply.

What’s Included in Probate Costs?

Probate costs generally include the court’s application fee, the online probate notice fee, and, if applicable, the professional fees charged by a lawyer engaged in the process. Professional fees are outlined in the Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Regulation 2015 (NSW).

Keep in mind that these fees exclude GST and disbursements such as filing fees.

Applying for a Grant of Probate

To obtain a Grant of Probate, the executor must follow a formal process, including:

  1. Locating the original Will.
  2. Placing an online advertisement indicating the intention to apply for Probate.
  3. Making reasonable inquiries to establish the assets and liabilities of the deceased.
  4. Preparing an inventory of the deceased’s assets and liabilities, including real estate in NSW.

The application for Probate includes various documents, such as a summons, an affidavit of the executor, copies of the draft grant of Probate, the original Will (and any codicils), and the death certificate of the deceased.

Do You Need a Solicitor for Probate?

While it’s not mandatory, engaging a solicitor can streamline the probate process, ensuring that all necessary steps are followed accurately. A lawyer can help avoid delays and potential requisitions from the court, which may request further information before granting Probate. A lawyer can also help to reduce the unnecessary costs that one may incur during the probate process.

To Sum Up

This article serves as a general guide to the probate process in Australia in 2023. However, it’s essential to note that laws and procedures may vary across jurisdictions. It’s not a substitute for legal advice, and individuals dealing with wills are encouraged to seek assistance from experienced solicitors.

Dealing with wills can be intricate, emotional, and time-consuming. Contacting an experienced solicitor at Probate Consultants will provide the necessary guidance to navigate legal questions and challenges effectively during this difficult time.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *