Applying for a Guernsey Grant of Representation (Probate or Letters of Administration)
A Grant of Representation is the document which formally allows someone to administer the personal property held in Guernsey of someone who has died.
If a valid Will has been left and there is a named Executor who is willing and able to act as such, the Grant will be of Probate.
If a valid Will has not been left (or if there is a valid Will but it names no Executor, or if the named Executor is unable or unwilling to act as such), the Grant will be of Letters of Administration.
A Grant of Representation allows the person (or persons) named in it to deal only with personal estate (that is, anything except real property).
How to apply
Have you been asked to obtain a Guernsey Grant of Probate by, for example, a bank or other financial institution? If so, information on obtaining Probate in the Bailiwick of Guernsey can be found here.
You will need to complete an Application Form, which can be found here.
Original documents must be sent to the Registry by post or personal delivery. Scanned documents will not be accepted in lieu of original documents (although these can be sent to the Registry for preliminary advice, especially for applicants not resident or represented in Guernsey. Once we have assessed the documents, we can let you know what additional information we might need).
An application using our Application Form can be made in one of the following ways:
- In person direct to the Guernsey Probate Registry (the office, in Lefebvre Street in St Peter Port, is open Monday to Thursday, 0900 to 1300, and to telephone callers only on Friday from 0900 to 1300)
- By post to the Guernsey Probate Registry (Bureau des Connétables, Lefebvre Street, St Peter Port, Guernsey, GY1 2JS)
- Through a lawyer or accountant. Details of all Guernsey Law Firms can be found on the Guernsey Bar website (www.guernseybar.com).
Registry fees are payable. Each application varies in cost. The tariff is available here. Please do not send any fees with your application as the exact fee will be confirmed by the Guernsey Probate Registry.
Attendance at the Registry
The Commissary sits each Friday at 0930 (except Good Friday and the Fridays closest to Christmas Day) to issue Grants of Representation. An appointment will be offered for local applicants to attend when the Grant of Representation is issued. Other arrangements will be made for applicants who are not resident in Guernsey, and for those who have difficulty attending in person.
Procedure at the Registry sitting
The procedure for each estate takes only a few minutes. The applicant(s) will be asked to confirm that the document presented is the Will of the deceased (or that there was no Will), and then to swear an Oath or make an Affirmation. There is no obligation at all to swear an Oath of a religious nature; but applicants who are content can do so.
If you already have a Grant in England & Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland
Guernsey is not part of the UK. Therefore, a separate Grant may be required by a Guernsey bank or other body where the assets are held.
Applying for a Guernsey Grant ahead of applying for a Grant (or the equivalent) in the jurisdiction of domicile
If a Grant or the equivalent is required elsewhere, it is usually cheaper to apply in Guernsey after a Grant has been issued in the other jurisdiction.
If there is no requirement for a Grant or equivalent elsewhere, you must let us know when making your initial enquiries.
An asset holder can at its discretion release funds of any amount without the need for a Guernsey Grant. The decision to require Probate is entirely up to the asset holder concerned; an asset holder might ask for a Grant irrespective of the value of the Guernsey estate.
Copies of Grants of Representation issued in Guernsey
Copies of Grants are available for a fee, upon request.
The Guernsey Probate Registry cannot deal with disputes in respect of estates. It might be necessary to obtain legal advice in this regard.