Understanding the Law
May 8, 2009
Second or Subsequent Grants

You might be asking why should there be a second grant when the Court has already made a grant of probate to the executor/executrix or a grant of letters of administration to an administrator. Well there are situations when the court will have to issue a second grant especially where the grantee has died without distributing the estate.{{more}}

A grant de bonis non administratus

Bear with me with the Latin words, but we need to know the names by which these procedures are called in the law. What you need to know too, is that this grant is made to a person other than the original grantee because that person failed to complete the administration. The grant de bonis non is necessary because the person who is to administer the estate is dead, or because the previous grantee is mentally incapacitated, or where the donor of a power of attorney has died, or on the death of a minor or person suffering from mental illness for whose use and benefit the grant was made.

Application could also be made for a grant de bonis non administratus with will annexed.

The usual priority (as given last week) would be taken into consideration when the Court decides who is to receive the grant.

The process requires a covering letter, inventory of the estate, administration bond, the original grant and office copy of original will in the case of a grant de bonis non administratus. Don’t worry too much about the procedure as your attorney will help you out with the documents that have to be filed.

Cessate Grant

As the words suggest, it is a grant that ceases to have effect. It may occur, for example where a will is found after a copy is admitted into probate or on the death of a sole or surviving attorney or guardian.

Resealing a Grant

Where a testator has property in two countries and makes a will pertaining to those properties, his executor can apply for probate in the country where he makes the will and reseals it in the other country. Where the will is resealed in St. Vincent the grant of probate in the other country and the will must be filed. Resealing applications are restricted to Britain, a British court in a foreign country or colonial or Commonwealth countries. The application could be made by the personal representative or the grantee or someone appointed by the personal representative. An applicant with a power of attorney could reseal a grant. A notice of intention to apply is not necessary.

We dealt with some important aspects of non-contentious probate practice for the past weeks. Non-contentious probate matters are dealt with by the Registrar so even though the application is addressed to the judge you do not have to go before a judge. The end product is a grant which gives you the power to distribute the testator’s estate.

Now we can enter the realm of contentious probate practices and we will start next week God’s willing. Enjoy your reading!

Ada Johnson is a solicitor and barrister-at-law.
E-mail address is: exploringthelaw@yahoo.com