How Long Does Probate Take in Australia (and What Delays the Process)

How long does probate take in Australia? The amount of time can vary, but some factors can contribute to a delay.
How Long Does Probate Take in Australia (and What Delays the Process)

The time it takes to process probate in Australia can vary. If you choose to get help from a professional service or local public trustee, the process is usually quick and simple. However, a few factors can contribute to how long probate takes in Australia.

In this guide, we cover exactly how long probate takes and what can typically delay the process. Keep reading to learn more.

What is probate?

Probate is the legal process of validating the Will of a deceased person. When you receive a grant of probate, the court legally recognises the validity of the Will and grants the executor authority to administer the estate.

How long does probate take in Australia?

The application process for probate in Australia can vary depending on the state and the application. Therefore, it’s a case by case situation, making it hard to determine exactly how long probate takes in Australia.

The executor must publish a notice of intention to apply for Probate on the Online Court Registry 14 days before they can lodge the probate application. Generally, you can typically obtain probate within 1-3 months of the date of the death.

What can delay obtaining probate?

Obtaining probate is not always as easy as it seems. A few factors can delay the process quite significantly, including the application process.

1. Finding the Will

Before an executor can apply for a grant of probate, they need to locate the Will of the deceased. If the death was sudden and the executor was never informed of its whereabouts, they’ll need to contact the person's lawyer or audit the person’s personal affairs and documents.

2. Determining the assets and liabilities of the deceased

Depending on the size of the estate, its assets and beneficiaries, the time to organise the assets can vary. Depending on the state of the estate and prior estate planning, this step can take up some time.

3. Receiving the death certificate

A death certificate is an official document that the funeral director obtains when registering the death. The time it takes to receive the official document can vary depending on how the death was registered and may take several weeks.

4. The probate application process

The application process for probate requires several documents for the grant of probate to move forward. If you miss a step, document or incorrectly submit information, you can significantly delay the distribution of the assets to the beneficiaries.

Consider using a professional probate service like Willed to avoid making an error. Our team of expert lawyers in Australia are here to help prepare and lodge your probate application. We offer a fixed fee and price match guarantee after your free consultation.

Final Thoughts

Probate is a critical step in managing an estate after a friend or loved one passes away. Since there are so many variables, the length of time it takes to receive a grant of probate can vary. The best way to get through the process quickly is with the help of a solicitor or lawyer.

Start writing your Will and planning your estate online today.

More helpful reading:

What does probate mean in Australia?

How to contest a will after probate

When is probate unnecessary?

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