As a regional general practice, this firm necessarily engages in matters relating to Wills and Deceased Estates and has substantial experience in relation to all aspects of these matters.
When a person dies it is usually necessary to transfer the deceased’s assets into the name of an administrator, usually the person named as Executor in the Will.
A Will, whilst not essential, is a most useful instrument in determining the ultimate ownership of the property of a deceased person because it is largely unassailable, and the Testator is in the position of making the necessary and important decisions in relation to his property and family affairs.
It is most important therefore that the intentions of the Testator are made according to the requirements of the Law in relation to succession matters and that those for whom the testator has a moral obligation to make provision in his Will are adequately accounted for. It is the duty of the solicitor to ensure that these responsibilities are met and that the Will is drawn in a manner such that proper effect is given to the intensions of the Testator and that the orderly transition of the Testator’s interests are made unto the beneficiaries upon his death.
Where there is any real estate or other significant assets then it will be necessary to prove the Will and obtain a grant of Probate thereof. Occasionally the deceased will not have left a Will and it will be necessary for some person with the necessary standing in relation to the deceased to apply for a grant of Administration of the estate.
Occasionally, of course, not everything goes to plan and one or more of the beneficiaries may feel either left out or inadequately provided for or that, perhaps the Executor, acting as trustee of the estate, is acting improperly or not acting at all. In such circumstances remedies are available at Law, necessarily requiring litigation in order to force the Executors to comply, or to cause a just and proper distribution of the deceased's bounty.
It can also be the case where the Executors themselves seek guidance from the Court as to, for example, the proper construction of a Will.