Letters of Administration in WA
Letters of Administration from $900 (inc GST) + Court filing fee
Our fee includes:
✅ Consultation with a lawyer;
✅ Preparation of the Letters of Administration application for the sole Administrator;
✅ Witnessing the Administrator's affidavit;
✅ Court lodgment; and
✅ Providing the Grant to you.
What additional fees could apply?
Additional fees will apply to certain applications:
Do I need to apply for Letters of Administration in WA?
If the deceased person did not leave a Will, or the Will is invalid and they left some assets in WA, you will most likely need to obtain Letters of Administration in WA.
In WA, a deceased estate includes all the property of a deceased person and may include (for example):
If you are unsure if you need Letters of Administration, give us a call.
What is Letters of Administration?
Letters of Administration is the process of applying to the Supreme Court of WA to administer the estate of a deceased person pursuant to section 14 of the Administration Act 1903. This Act sets out a formula which determines how the net assets of a deceased estate are to be distributed. The distribution to each family member is different depending upon who are the surviving relatives.
Proposed amendments to the Administration Act 1903
The Parliament of Western Australia is considering whether to amend section 14 of the Administration Act 1903 to increase the amount of a spouse's legacy to $435,000 where the person died intestate leaving children and $650,000 where the person died leaving no children. The Explanatory Memorandum to the amendment bill indicates that the changes to the law are to take effect from the date of Royal Assent or the day following.
The amendment bill also seeks to amend the parental statutory legacy from $6,000 to $52,000. The parental statutory legacy applies where the deceased has living parents and/or siblings or siblings' issue but does not have a surviving husband, wife, partner or issue.
Who can apply for Letters of Administration?
A person who is entitled to a benefit from a deceased estate can make an application to be the Administrator. Generally this will be a parent, spouse or child of the deceased person. The Administration Act 1903 explains who is entitled to apply to be an Administrator.
What is the process to obtain Letters of Administration in WA?
The process for obtaining a grant of Letters of Administration in WA involves the following steps:
Any application for Letters of Administration must be made in compliance with the requirements of the Non-contentious Probate Rules 1967, the Rules of the Supreme Court 1971 and the general practice of the Court.
Can there be more than one Administrator?
If you wish to apply to be an Administrator, you are not restricted to applying by yourself. Another person can act as a Joint Administrator with you, which can assist with carrying out the duties of an Administrator.
Can a Deed of Family Arrangement be used to vary the distribution under the Administration Act?
Yes. A Deed of Family Arrangement can be executed by the beneficiaries to vary the rights and interests of one or more of the beneficiaries. If the changes concern a different entitlement to land, there are duty (formally stamp duty) implications in WA and there may be Capital Gains Tax implications. You can read greater details about this issue in our publication titled "Can the beneficiaries amend the terms of a deceased's Will?"
What happens if the deceased estate is bankrupt?
If the deceased person's debts exceed their assets, the estate will be bankrupt.
Bankrupt estates can raise complex legal issues. If you are unsure if you should apply for Letters of Administration if the estate is bankrupt, give us a call.
Can an eligible beneficiary commence an inheritance claim?
Yes. An eligible beneficiary has a period of 6 months after the Grant of Letters of Administration to commence a claim. After that time, the Supreme Court must grant permission for the claim to proceed.