How Long Does Probate Typically Take to be Granted?

Probate is the term that is used to describe the proving of a will and the affairs of the deceased person. It is vital to get some professional advice and assistance when it comes to administering the estate of a dead person and there are many stages that you will need to go through.

It is also possible to contest what is known as an unfair will and you will need to employ a company that specialises in legal services to assist you with this process. Probate can be prone to suffering from delays as arguments between beneficiaries can erupt causing endless problems with settlement.

Dealing with Tax Issues

If the deceased person owes inheritance tax, then this must be paid in part or sometimes in full (depending on the amount owed) before an official ‘grant of probate’ letters of administration can be provided. However, it is worth noting that if the estate is not of a high value, i.e. there is no land, property or shares included, then a ‘grant of probate’ is not necessary.

Issues with Non-Married Couples

It is important to know what to do with your wealth as if there is no will in place, then some couples will not be automatically entitled to receive their partner’s assets in the event of their death if they are not married. This is a common problem that can be avoided by ensuring that there is a valid will in place that will act to protect the lawful wishes of a person in their death.

All deaths have to be registered with the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages and you can get help with this process via a professional company that provides legal services. If you want to ask the question ‘how long does probate take?’ then you will need to take into consideration a number of different factors that will all affect the length of time it will take including:

•           What was owned by the deceased (i.e. land, shares, property etc)

•           How well the deceased’s financial records were kept

•           What the will reads

•           Whether or not inheritance tax is owed

•           If there are any legal disputes

All of these factors can make a difference to the length of time it takes to organise probate and this is why it is different for every case.

All claims to an estate must be received before it can be dealt with. Probate will be granted in the event of a death and beneficiaries have six months from when probate was granted to make their claim for the estate or a part of the estate. A grant cannot be applied for until the liabilities and assets of an estate have been established and sometimes it is necessary to track back on many years of bank statements to see what money was loaned or gifted. The length of time for probate is highly variable and can vary from a few months to many years but usually an estate will be settled in three to nine months.

1 thought on “How Long Does Probate Typically Take to be Granted?”

  1. Good article. You also have to include dealing with difficult judges. Once the estate is setup, the probate judge is the “master” or “dictator” of the estate. They can veto any decision that you make up until the day the estate is closed. And even better you have absolutely ZERO recourse.

    Let’s say for example you want to sell an asset, but the judge does not like how you managed the asset or approve of funds you used to maintain the asset. They can block the sale of that asset. This was a shock to me. I’ll just end the comment and say I hope no one goes through an estate closure and also make sure you have a good attorney.


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