Grant of Letters of Administration

4 min read
When someone dies and they left no will then they are viewed in law to have dies Intestate. This means that the deceased's estate will be distributed in accordance with Intestacy Rules. Read on to find out more about this subject.

As we discussed in our article, Obtaining a Grant of Probate, when you die with a will you apply for a Grant of Probate, however when there isn't a will then you'll need to get a Grant of Letters of Administration so that you have the legal right to deal with the property, money or possessions of someone who dies. If you dispute someone's right to apply for a grant then you can stop their application - read about Probate Caveat - How to stop a grant of probate

We handle the complete service of administering the estate including application for Grant of Letters of Administration, payment of Inheritance Tax due, collection of the estate's assets, conveyancing for the sale, payment of any debts/unpaid bills and final distribution to the beneficiaries.

Call 0333 344 3234 for a Fixed Probate Fee Quote for Wills & Probate specialists.

Do you need a Grant of Letters of Administration?

You'll need a grant if the deceased person has:

£10,000 or more

stocks or shares

certain insurance policies

property or land held in their own name or as 'tenants in common'

The Grant can then be provided to the bank or relevant institution before they'll agree to allow the transfer of the control of the asset to you.
You may not need a grant if the deceased has:

  • left less than £10,000
  • owned everything jointly with someone else and everything passes automatically to the surviving joint owner (click to read more about Joint Tenants of Property)

How to apply for a Grant of Letters of Administration

Applying for probate is a 4 stage process:

(Important - Whether you has inheritance tax to pay or not, you'll still need to complete an Inheritance Tax Form and submit to the HMRC)

You should include:

  • the probate application form PA1
  • the Inheritance Tax form
  • an official copy of the death certificate
  • the original will and 3 copies - and any codicils (codicils are additions or amendments to the will)
  • the application fee of £215 - a cheque made payable to HM Courts and Tribunals Service (there’s no fee if the estate is under £5,000 - see below for probate fee table)

    Swear an oath
The probate office will send you an oath and details of how to arrange an appointment. You’ll need to swear the oath at either:

  • the office of a commissioner for oaths (usually a solicitor)
  • a local probate office

An oath is your promise that the information you’ve given is true to the best of your knowledge.

You should get the grant through the post within 10 working days of swearing the oath.

Probate Fees

Application Fee
In all cases where the net estate (ie the amount remaining in the deceased’s sole name after funeral expenses and debts owing have been deducted) is over £5,000. Note: Joint assets passing automatically to the surviving joint owner should not be included when calculating the fee.

If the net estate as above is under £5,000.

No fee
Application for a second grant in an estate where a previous grant has been issued.

Additional Copies of the Grant of Probate
Official (sealed) copies of the Grant of Representation if ordered when you lodge your application for a Grant of Representation.

‘Sealed and certified copy’ – if assets are held abroad you may need one of these. Please check with the appropriate organisations before ordering.
50p  per copy (including Will and Grant)

Additional copies (consisting of grant including a copy of the Will, if applicable) ordered after the Grant of Representation has been issued.£10  for first copy then 50p per additional copy

Need help with administering the probate?

With the death of a close family member or friend, you may not be feeling up to the task of applying for a grant of letters of administration and then administering their estate. If this is the case then you can employ the services of a solicitor to handle the grant of probate and to administer the estate.

Our team of Wills and Probate solicitors are on hand to help through handling this for you. In most cases the estate will cover the costs of the work undertaken and we provide a fixed fee for all the work from grant of probate to final distribution. Call our specialists on 0333 344 3234 or email

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