A Grant of Probate is a legal document authorising the Executors to deal with the deceased’s estate. The Grant of Probate is sealed for use in the country in which it was issued. If the deceased lived overseas but also owned assets (for example, property, shares, bank accounts) in the UK it may be necessary to obtain a reseal of the existing Grant of Probate in order to deal with those assets. This means that the Executors avoid having to apply for Probate again in the UK.

The Colonial Probate Act permits the resealing in the UK of grants made in a number of countries and territories. Example countries recognised under the Colonial Probate Act include Australia, South Africa, Canada and New Zealand.

In order for one of these countries/territories to have the grant resealed the following are required:

• The original Grant (or a court sealed and certified copy or an exemplification of the Grant) together with a court sealed and certified copy of the Will plus 2 photocopies;

• A written request for the Grant to be resealed from the persons named in the Grant;

• A completed IHT207 form or IHT421 form (this is part of the IHT400 form) for tax purposes;

• The appropriate Probate Registry fee.

Similar procedures apply for grants obtained in other jurisdictions.

Please contact Helen Freely, a Partner in the Private Client Department, if you would like some further information about reseals of Grants of Probate

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