What is a Deceased Estate
- by siteadmin
When a loved one dies, their affairs must be managed. This includes settling their debts and distributing their property. A specialist estate lawyer can help you. The property of a deceased person includes all their money, possessions and belongings. This is called the ‘deceased estate’. It can be a daunting task to deal with it.
When someone dies, it’s important to understand that there are a range of legal steps they may need to take before their estate can be distributed. Probate is one such process. It’s an application that is made to the Supreme Court of Western Australia, which gives the executor named in the Will official authorisation to deal with the deceased’s estate. It also establishes their identity so that they can access information relating to the estate’s assets and liabilities.
A Probate application involves preparing an affidavit and motion paper, gathering all the relevant supporting documents and lodging them with the Court. In most cases, the original Will will need to be lodged with the Probate application as well. This often requires going through the deceased’s personal effects, enquiring with family members, lawyers and financial institutions. The more organised and comprehensive the search is, the quicker the probate process will be. The Court will review the application and issue a Grant of Probate (or Letters of Administration with Will annexed) once it’s satisfied that the applicant is qualified to act as an executor.
There are some circumstances where a Probate application isn’t required. This includes smaller estates and those that are held jointly with a surviving spouse. However, a lot of assets such as bank accounts and superannuation funds must be accessed through Probate in order to release them to beneficiaries.
We are committed to providing a compassionate and efficient service to our clients. We know that dealing with the death of a loved one is difficult and stressful. That’s why our experienced and compassionate team are here to guide you through the process of obtaining a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration. We can provide advice about Wills and deceased estates, assist you with the preparation of an affidavit, handle requisitions from the Court and apply for Probate on your behalf.
Letters of Administration
When someone dies, it’s important that the estate is dealt with promptly. Failure to do so can lead to disputes over the deceased person’s assets and may result in a backlog of tax assessments that must be addressed. If you’re handling the administration of a deceased estate, there are many things that need to be taken into account – such as obtaining a death certificate, applying for a Grant of Probate, and determining the beneficiaries.
The process of dealing with a deceased estate can be complicated and time-consuming. To avoid disputes and delays, you should seek the assistance of a specialist Estate Lawyer Perth. They will be able to help you with the complexities of the law, and ensure that all of the required procedures are followed. This will reduce the risk of errors and speed up the process.
A specialised Estate Lawyer Perth can also advise you on how to handle queries from residuary beneficiaries and creditors. They will also prepare and lodge all of the relevant documents to the Supreme Court. This will include the death notice, affidavit and statements of assets and liabilities. These will need to be prepared carefully, as they are subject to strict regulatory guidelines.
If there is no Will, you must apply for a Grant of Letters of Administration from the Supreme Court. This is a similar process to applying for a Probate, and involves the same steps. However, the application must be made by the person who would have been the Executor if there had been a Will.
The application for Letters of Administration will need to be supported by a statement of assets and liabilities, an affidavit from the applicant and a certified copy of the death certificate. The application will also need to be accompanied by the applicable application fee. If the application is successful, the Supreme Court will appoint the applicant as Administrator of the deceased estate. This will give them the authority to transfer and sell properties, pay bills, collect rent from tenants and manage the money held in bank accounts. The Administrator will then distribute the estate to those who are entitled to it.
Administration of Trusts
When someone dies, their property, money and debts become known as the estate. This needs to be sorted out by a person in charge of this process, called the executor or administrator. They have extensive powers to act on behalf of the estate and must do so with utmost care and diligence. Unfortunately, sometimes people fail to meet these high standards and may misuse their power. If you suspect that your loved one’s estate is being administered incorrectly, contact an experienced deceased estate lawyer.
The executor or administrator must make an inventory of the estate’s assets and liabilities. This includes bank accounts, investments, superannuation, life insurance and interests in real estate. They must also liaise with taxation authorities to determine the correct taxable position of the estate. In addition, they must provide a deceased estate tax return to the Court and the beneficiaries. Our lawyers work closely with accountants to ensure that this process is completed correctly and avoid contentious Court proceedings.
Inheritance disputes are a common occurrence and can be very complex. If you are considering a claim against the estate of a loved one, it is important to seek advice from an experienced deceased estate lawyer in Perth. We can help you understand your rights and obligations under the law and guide you through the process of obtaining a grant of representation.
If you have an interest in a property owned by the deceased, it is not possible to sell or transfer this interest until probate or letters of administration have been granted by the Supreme Court. Then the name of the deceased person must be removed from the title at Landgate before the property can be sold to a third party or the beneficiaries. This can take months to complete and it is often best to obtain the assistance of a solicitor or conveyancer.
When an individual dies, their taxation obligations do not automatically pass on to the estate. As a result, executors of deceased estates will need to lodge both an individual tax return and a deceased estate tax return for the year of death. Then there are the underlying taxes that may apply to the assets of the deceased estate including capital gains tax.
The Australian Taxation Office recognises that it can be difficult for relatives, trustees and appointed agents to work through the death of a loved one while also managing the finalisation of their estate. To support them, they have established a dedicated team to help people manage their deceased estates.
If a property was owned by the deceased as a sole owner or in trust, the executor must lodge an individual income tax return and a deceased estate tax return. This is regardless of whether the proceeds from the sale are paid to beneficiaries or into the deceased estate. The deceased estate tax return must be lodged for each financial year after the date of death until the estate is finalised.
It is common for deceased estates to have a backlog of taxation assessments which must be paid prior to distribution. It is therefore important for the executor to ensure they have sufficient funds set aside to pay these debts. It is also advisable for the executor to advertise the estate in local newspapers to allow creditors and claimants to make a claim against the deceased estate. Any claims made against the estate must be reviewed to determine legitimacy and paid from the estate funds.
A major issue with the administration of deceased estates is identifying and resolving outstanding liabilities, such as debts to trade suppliers, utilities and tax authorities. In addition, it is vital that a full review of the deceased person’s business transactions be carried out to identify any potential tax deductions.
Properties that the deceased owned as joint tenants with others do not form part of their estate and are passed to the surviving joint tenant(s) in accordance with the Intestate Succession Act. However, even where a joint tenancy is held with another person or persons, the legal rights and duties of a deceased owner cannot be extinguished by the terms of a Will.
When a loved one dies, their affairs must be managed. This includes settling their debts and distributing their property. A specialist estate lawyer can help you. The property of a deceased person includes all their money, possessions and belongings. This is called the ‘deceased estate’. It can be a daunting task to deal with it.…