When a person dies then all their belongings are left to be dealt with, their home, vehicles, what is in their bank accounts, and everything else. If they wrote a Will that is legal before they died then the Executor is the one who will follow their wishes and sort out all those things known collectively as the estate. In order to go through that though the Executor must first get the legal authority and that is the process of going through Probate. The wills and probate Victoria court grants that authority and says whether the Will is legal. With a grant of probate, they can go about lawfully identifying all the assets of the deceased and giving them to the named beneficiaries. If the Will cannot be found or there is no Will then going through probate is still necessary and then the rules of intestacy say who benefits from the estate.
Probate search, Victoria and elsewhere
While going through Probate whoever is the Executor must gather everything in the Estate because if they miss anything then a beneficiary will not get the complete inheritance they are owed. The Executor does face accountability for such a mistake even if it was just that. So being thorough as they look is important but in cases where they did not know the person who died well or lives far away, it makes it hard. It can get even harder when assets are found abroad such as pensions or property.
Another thing the Executor will have to do is find all the people in the Will who are beneficiaries. Sometimes this is a simple process but sometimes it is not. People move on, and lose touch, and it is hard to track them down, especially if they have moved to another country. There are a few methods you can use and if there is anyone they are not able to find then they can still come forward later to claim their share. If provisions in the Will are not made for such a thing then the Executor will need to cover it themselves. As the process of Wills and Probate Victoria completing Probate searches is very important otherwise the Executor can be held accountable.
Specialist lawyers are a good idea to hire during such times as they can help with searching for assets and people and with everything else that is involved. Probate lawyers are those who specialise in these kinds of cases and their knowledge and guidance can be invaluable. It can certainly help lift the load at an already hard time.
Searching for an old Will or Grant of Probate
The above information covers accessing wills and probate records for recently deceased people. But sometimes there is a need to access an old Will or Grant of Probate. If you need to do such a probate search Victoria it is just a matter of accessing public records as both of them become a public document up to two weeks after the grant of probate is issued.