* for four consecutive years: 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 among all law firms in NSW.
When a person dies without leaving a Will, also known as “intestate”, the next-of-kin needs to obtain a Grant of Letters of Administration in order to administer the estate. Legislation in New South Wales determines exactly how the estate is to be divided, and who will be appointed the administrator (usually the next-of-kin).
The application for Letters of Administration can be quite complex as it is often unique to the particular circumstances of the deceased and involves the drafting of legal affidavits, consent forms and disclaimers. Our team has experience in obtaining hundreds of Grants so we have seen many different scenarios and we are confident we can obtain the Grant for you.
An estate administrator must be an Australian resident. However, if you are the next-of-kin and you require Letters of Administration in NSW - please let us know.
The Succession Act of NSW determines that the person, or people, entitled to the majority of an intestate estate are usually the ones most entitled to act as the estate administrator.
If, for instance, a husband or wife passes away, it is their spouse or de facto partner who is usually entitled to the largest share of the intestate estate and therefore the person most entitled to act as the estate administrator.
If more than one person is entitled to being the administrator, all parties need to agree and consent to a sole administrator to make the application. Otherwise, co-administrators are also able to make the application.
The division of the intestate estate in NSW is also determined by the Succession Act.
The division will depend on the familial circumstances of the deceased.
We can advise you as to your entitlements. Please leave us a message with any questions you might have.
Below you'll find the answers to many recurring questions we get. Have any other questions or need clarity? Ask us.
Whether or not you are required to get Letters of Administration depends on your circumstances. If the deceased held real estate or had left assets with organisations such as banks and superannuation funds, these organisations might require Letters of Administration before they are prepared to pay you the bank funds or superannuation death benefits for example.
If the funds held are minimal, these organisations might not require you to provide Letters of Administration and might just ask that you sign an indemnity waiver.
The Grant of Letters of Administration achieves the same purpose as the Grant of Probate - it determines who has the power to call in the assets of the estate, to pay the estate liabilities and to distribute the assets of the deceased.
The difference between the Grant of Probate and Letters of Administration is that a valid Will allows the will-maker to determine themselves who will administer their estate (to be their executor) and who will receive their assets (the beneficiaries). When someone dies without a Will, NSW’s Succession Act determines which next-of-kin will be the administrator and how the estate will be distributed amongst the deceased’s relatives.
The first step in the process, lodging the online notice of intended application for Letters of Administration, necessitates that 2 weeks pass before the administrator submits their application for Letters of Administration to give enough notice to any potential creditors or claimants on the estate.
After the application is submitted it can take anywhere from 2-6 weeks, depending on how busy the Supreme Court of NSW is, before the Grant is issued.
No. No one is forced to act as an estate administrator, or executor.
If you do not wish to act as an administrator we can easily assist you to renounce administration and to assist the next-of-kin to obtain the Grant of Administration. Unless you want to renounce the benefits you are entitled to, you will still be entitled to your appropriate share of the estate.
Depending on the circumstances you might be required to submit the following documents:
We will fully advise you of all certificates that we require in order to obtain the Grant of Letters of Administration for you.