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Questions to ask if the deceased did not leave a Will

Who can apply for letters of administration?


Usually, the applicant is entitled to benefit from the deceased’s estate under section 14 of the Administration Act 1903.


These are several examples:

  • If the deceased is survived by their spouse and adult children then the spouse and the children are entitled to apply

  • If the deceased was survived by their adult children but had no spouse (married or de facto) then all children are entitled to apply.

  • If the deceased was not survived by a spouse and children the siblings and parents of the deceased may apply.


If there is more than one person entitled to apply for letters of administration do they have to apply?


Sometimes there is more than one person entitled to apply for letters of administration or letters of administration with will annexed. If one or more persons entitled to apply do not wish to apply then they can consent for the other eligible person or persons to apply.


What are sureties or guarantees or a section 17A deed?


If there is a beneficiary under 18 the applicant must find 2 people to guarantee they, the sureties or guarantors, will make good any financial loss that the minor beneficiary might suffer because of the applicant's actions. This is to make sure the minor beneficiary's interest is protected.


What documents do I have to file with my application for letters of administration?


The documents you must file with your letters of administration application are:

  • a motion for letters of administration

  • an affidavit from you, the applicant, with a statement of the deceased's assets and liabilities

  • letters of consent from all other people entitled to benefit from the estate who aren't applying

  • any sureties, guarantees, or Section 17A Deeds if there are minor beneficiaries

  • the deceased's death certificate – the original and a copy.


You must pay the lodgement fee at the time of applying. The documents you must file with your letters of administration with the will annexed application are:

  • the above documents required for the letters of administration application plus

  • the original marked will

  • an affidavit of due execution from a witness if needed.


If the task of preparing the application is daunting call us on 04211 45637 or just book a video consultation at this link to discuss how we can help you.