July 19th, 2019 by FH&P Lawyers

An estate grant of Administration is a grant by the Supreme Court appointing an individual to act as the administrator of the estate. This grant is typically necessary if the deceased dies without a will (intestate). A Grant of Administration gives an administrator the official right and recognition to act on behalf of the estate.

When will an estate need a Grant of Administration?

  • If a person dies without a will
  • If the executor named in the will also passes away or is unable or unwilling to act
  • If the deceased did not name an executor in their will
  • If the executor of the will is out of province for an extended period and are unable to fulfill their duties.
  • If the executor named in the will forgoes their appointment.

Depending on which of the above applies there are different types of Grants of Administration but for simplicity sake we will discuss grants of Administration generally.

If the above situations apply to an estate, there are certain individuals that are entitled to apply for a Grant of Administration. As with most estate matters, in most instances the first entitlement for administration goes to the spouse of the deceased. If there is no spouse, or if the spouse forgoes that responsibility, the next of kin or children can apply. Where people have the same priority or lower priority to someone else and they want to act as the Administrator then they will need the consent of everyone with an equal or greater right to apply.

There is also the option for a third party to act as Administrator provided all persons entitled to apply consent. If there are no individuals or parties willing to apply as an administrator, the Supreme Court of BC may appoint a Public Guardian as an administrator.

What is the process of applying for a Grant of Letters of Administration?

  • Determine if an Estate Grant is in fact required (by seeking the advice of a lawyer)
  • Notify all those that are entitled or interested in administering the estate
  • prepare and file Affidavits which include an itemized list of all the assets and liabilities and their approximate value.
  • Prepare documents (such as requisite forms) for the Probate registry
    • These documents must also include proof that there is no will or that there is no named executor in the will
  • Obtain the consents of everyone with an equal or greater right to apply; and
  • The person to whom administration is granted may be required to post security or a bond.This is most often required where one of the beneficiaries is unable to consent to the appointment and the Public Guardian and Trustee is involved

What are the responsibilities of the administrator?

  • Valuation and inventory of all assets and liabilities of the deceased
  • Paying off all the debts that the deceased may have from the estate
  • Contacting all the beneficiaries and those who are entitled to the estate.
  • Applying for a Grant of Administration if necessary.

Estate Grants, including Grants of Administration and Grants of Probate are an important first step in the Estate process. As usual, we encourage you to contact a lawyer regarding specific Estate related questions.

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Estate Grants - Administration

An estate grant of Administration is a grant by the Supreme Court appointing an individual to act as the administrator of the estate. This grant is typically necessary if the deceased dies without a will (intestate). A Grant of Administration gives an administrator the official right and recognition to act on behalf of the estate.

How do I determine who will be my child's guardian?

There are often challenges when someone dies without a Will, but it can be particularly problematic if the person who has died is a parent and guardian of a minor child.