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In legal terms, probate is the legal process by which a will is validated by the court as the last will of a deceased testator. In simple terms, probate means a copy of certification from the court or a competent jurisdiction that a will can be transfer to a beneficiary of the will. A probate is not to be confused with a succession deed.
While you might think that the process for a probate is difficult and time consuming, it is not. The entire process is done in 4 steps, which are:
The first step is to make an application to the District Judge via a petition duly signed and verified by or on behalf of the applicant in the format prescribed under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908. This should be done after 7 days of the testator’s death.
The application needs to be prepared by lawyers and sent to the high court, under whose jurisdiction the property falls. In some cases, a lower court may accept the application.
Certain documents are required to be submitted while applying for a probate. You need to show documents that prove that the will is genuine. You will also need to show the death certificate of the testator and submit a document to prove that the will was executed by the testator on his own free will.
Once the court receives the application, it verifies all details and issues an invitation letter to the nearest kin of the deceased to claim the probate. A letter is also stuck at prominent places for public view and to invite objections, in case of any. If after 30 days, there is no objection from the kin or the public, the probate is issued.
In all applications to the court, documents have to be submitted. For a probate, along with the application, you will need to submit the following documents:
It generally takes six to nine months for the entire process to complete. This is however, if there are no valid objections either from the public or the kind of the deceased making the will. In cases of objection, the time frame might extend to even 2 years, depending on the seriousness of the objection.
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