© 2019 National Bereavement Service

Probate in Northern Ireland

Go Back


Probate in Northern Ireland is very similar process to that of England & Wales


Before you apply for probate you need to check whether or not there is a Will,

If the person left a will, you’ll get a ‘grant of probate’, if the person did not leave a will (sometimes referred to as Intestate), you’ll get ‘letters of administration’.

A grant is almost always needed when the person who died leaves one or more of the following:

• £10,000 or more

• stocks or shares

• certain insurance policies

• property or land held in their own name or as 'tenants in common'

In most cases above, the bank or relevant institution will need to see the grant before transferring control of the assets. Where the estate is small some organisations may choose to release the money to you without a grant.

You may not need a grant if the deceased left less than £10,000 or if everything was jointly owned with someone else in which case everything passes automatically to the surviving joint owner.


The Grant of Probate/Letters of Administration

Value the Estate

As part of the process you need to value the ‘Estate’ which involves collating all the information on the deceased’s land, property, money, possessions, shares and debts. The total value of these assets will determine which forms you will need to complete.


For estates under the current Inheritance Tax Threshold (currently £325,000)

you will need to complete IHT205.


If the estate is over this threshold you will need to complete IHT400.

The Interview

Once you have completed all the documents you will need to send a completed appointment request with copy of the death certificate, IHT205/INT400 and a copy of the will if there is one.


If the deceased lived in County Fermanagh, Londonderry or Tyrone you can use either the Londonderry or Belfast office, but if they lived in County Antrim, Armagh or Down you must use the Belfast office.


When you attend the appointment, you will need the following documents:


• Photo ID for Executors

• Death or coroner’s certificate

• Inheritance tax form IHT205 or IHT421

• Original Will

• Marriage certificate – if no Will and the deceased was married

• Decree Absolute – if no Will and the deceased was divorced

• Probate fee payment

• Other forms required by the Probate Office


The Probate Office will try to give you an interview within three weeks of getting your appointment request form. You will be notified of the appointment date and time by telephone or letter.


The interview will take place in a private office and will last about 30 minutes.


If the deceased person left a Will, at least seven days must have passed from the date of death to the date of appointment. If there is no Will, 28 days must have passed.

Fees in N. Ireland

There is no fee if the Estate is less than £10,000. If the value is over £10,000 the fee is £296 plus £12 per copy of the grant you will need.


Call NBS if you need any help or advise on 0800 0426 121

© 2019 National Bereavement Service

The National Bereavement Service is a not for profit organisation. Registered address: Hilden Park House, 79 Tonbridge Road, Hildenborough, Tonbridge, Kent, United Kingdom, TN11 9BH. Company number 09333323