When someone dies their property immediately passes into the hands of the executor's. Then in order for their property to be divided according to their wishes, the executor of their estate must apply to the Probate office to take out a grant of Probate in order to administer their estate. The estate of the deceased cannot be administered until the grant of probate is received from the Probate office. The Probate Office is part of the High Court and its core function in the probate process is to give authority to the correct person at law to deal with a deceased person's estate.
The three most common types of Grant issued by the Probate Office are the following;
Grant of Probate - Where a person dies leaving a valid will and appoints an Exector.
Grant of Letters of Administration- Where a person dies without having made a valid will, they are deemed to died intestate. The Grant issues to the person or persons who were their nearest next of kin at the date of death. The Succession Act 1965, determines who is next of kin.
Grant of Letters of Administration with Will Annexed- Where a person dies having made a valid will and a person other than the executor applies, the Grant issues to the persons entitled by law.