When drafting a Will, it is essential that one obtains legal advice. Wills, statistically, tend to be an area of law where many lay persons will “give it a go” themselves.
This can have drastic consequences when it comes time to deal with a person’s Estate upon their death.
Wills have a very specific design and requirements in order to be considered valid. If a Will is not drafted properly then a person risks having their final wishes declared invalid by the Courts or the subject of costly legal applications to the High Court of Ireland in order to rectify any mistakes.
At Sherlock and Co. Solicitors Clondalkin we have a long history of drafting Wills for our clients and can provide ancillary advice as to the effect that any bequest may have or possible tax ramifications for your beneficiaries.
In essence, bringing a will to probate means obtaining the High Court’s Probate Office permission to certify that the will is legitimate and that all the civil, financial and tax matters of the Estate are in order. This is called “proving a will”.
If there is some uncertainty as to the veracity of the document or whether there is dispute about two or more wills, the Probate Office can make enquiries, such as asking to see the witnesses to a will. The executor of the will may not start executing its terms and dividing the estate of the deceased person before the Grant of probate is issued by the High Court Probate Office.
While the main objective of probate is to ensure that the will is valid, the second aspect is to ensure that the affairs of the deceased are in order.
This includes handling the debts and tax affairs of the deceased.
You do not want an executor distributing an estate only to learn out there is an accrued unpaid debt that has to be fulfilled.
Executors need to be aware that they are liable to the Estate and have an obligation to meet these debts.
If an Executor mishandles an Estate, they may become personally liable either to the Estate or to the creditors/beneficiaries of the Estate.
What if there is no Will?
In such cases then the process of Intestacy applies, and the distribution of the Estate is dictated by the Succession Act legislation.
This legislation also states who is entitled to apply to the High Court probate office for the Grant and handle the Estate.
Sherlock and Co. Solicitors has a long history of handling both Probate and Intestacy matters and is ready to provide expert legal advice to you based on your circumstances.
If you would like to learn more about making a will or have a query with regards to probate Law, please get in contact with Sherlock and Co Solicitors Clondalkin Village for more specifics.