Common Reasons that Probate Applications are Rejected
by: Veronica Manski
At Bell Alliance, we have completed our fair share of probate applications. Since the new Supreme Court rules around the Wills, Estates, and Succession Act (“WESA”) came into effect in 2014, our lawyers and paralegals have strived to perfect the process and documentation to avoid adjustments or requirements to file supplemental material. We can proudly say that the combination of technology and proper training allow us to file grant applications that generate preferred results. Accurate and error-free applications ensure quick approvals allowing us to transfer assets and wrap up estates efficiently.
When the registrar rejects an application, supplemental documentation is required in order to rectify any errors or deficiencies in the application. In some complex cases, the lawyer is required to obtain a court order, either by written application or by attending court to speak to the matter in front of a Master or Judge.
Ten common reasons for not receiving approval from the probate registry are:
1. Providing contradicting or ambiguous statements in the
supporting material or disclosure of assets and failure
to disclose properties held in trust or on a resulting
2. Failure to obtain a bond order in accordance to section
128 of WESA.
3. Notice being served less than 21 days prior to filing of the
application. In some cases, dates are incorrectly labeled on
Notices or Affidavits causing the registrar concern
regarding the actual date Notice was delivered. In other
cases, delivery requirements are not met prior to the
4. Failure to correctly name parties to ensure they match with
supporting material and reviewing the application to avoid
all typographical errors. Rectifying these deficiencies
requires a supplemental affidavit.
5. Failure to use the correct prescribed forms or removing
required language from the form.
6. Including all variations of the name of the deceased
including middle names and maiden names and ensuring that
the Wills search results address all variations of the
7. Ensuring the dates on all of the supporting affidavits are
earlier than the date of the submission form. The dates on
the exhibits not matching the referenced Affidavits.
8. Failure to include all necessary information for the
Statement of Assets and Liabilities, such as type of asset,
where it is held, any interest accrued, complete civic
addresses, and how ownership of the asset is held.
9. Failure to serve the Public Guardian and Trustee or wait for
10. Failing to meet the requirements under the prior legislation
for deaths that occurred before the new legislation came
The above list demonstrates why it is important to entrust probate applications to professional who regularly work with these documents and have learned all the nuances. It is far more cumbersome and expensive to fix an incomplete or incorrect application than to have it done properly at first instance.
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