In the majority of cases, a will must be probated. Probating a will means that the court recognizes the will as being valid. Applying for probate involves many steps and can be time-consuming. Without probating a will, the authority of executors may not be recognized by banks and government agencies. This is problematic for an executor who is trying to settle the deceased's affairs.
When an individual dies without a will, that person’s estate is divided pursuant to the Wills, Estate and Succession Act (WESA). Someone, usually a family member, must apply to court for letters of administration to have the legal authority to administer the estate and divide the estate amongst family members.
Applying for probate involves a complex process. Executors must file multiple documents with the court, including:
- An affidavit of the applicant
- The Certificate of Wills Search
- Submission for Estate Grant
- Affidavits of assets and liabilities
- The original will
Failing to fill out documents correctly or in a timely manner may cause significant delays. If the grant of probate is delayed, an executor cannot fulfil his or her duties until such time as probate is granted by the court.
The lawyers at Vancouver-based Westside Family Law have guided clients through complex family law and estate litigation matters for over three decades. We can provide you with knowledgeable, efficient representation. Fill out the contact form below to set up a free consultation with a lawyer, or call us at 604-734-7911 to get started.