Figures recently released by Citizens Advice show that their advisers have been receiving more and more queries about the difficulties that arise when someone dies without making a will. Whereas a will becomes effective on death and can enable the named executors to take practical action, even before a grant of probate has been obtained, the situation is different in an intestacy. Authority has to wait until the next of kin has obtained a grant of representation (letters of administration) from the Probate Registry.
Sometimes an experienced lawyer can come up with a strategy for avoiding some of the difficulties. For instance, we have been dealing with a case where the deceased had a company. The company does not die and we were able to use this company for the benefit of the beneficiaries before a grant had been obtained.
Nevertheless, the moral must be – make a will!