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How to secure English assets* when there is a foreign grant of probate
When a non-UK domiciled person dies and they owned assets in England, English authorities or organisations may not recognise a foreign grant of probate (or letters of administration). How can the executor of the overseas will deal with the English asset?
The English Probate Registry can reseal a foreign grant provided the deceased was from a current or former Commonwealth country (a list can be found below**). This will give the executor named in the foreign grant the legal power to deal with the English asset.
If you instruct us to reseal a foreign grant, we will:
The Probate Registry normally returns a re-sealed foreign grant of probate within 10 – 12 working days.
If you then instruct us to administer/collect in the English asset, we will liaise with the relevant organisation on your behalf using the resealed grant and the power of attorney.
If the deceased is from a non-Commonwealth country, a separate grant in respect of their will/estate is necessary and the Probate Registry will need to be satisfied both on the issue of domicile*** and that the person applying for the grant is the proper person to apply on the basis of that proper law. An IHT account will need to be submitted as above.
This process can be time-consuming depending on the complexity of the estate and the domicile history of the deceased. We can provide reassurance in such circumstances and obtain the resealed foreign grant.
*English assets’ refer to assets both in England or Wales.
*** It will have to be shown that the deceased was domiciled in the non-commonwealth country. Domicile relates to where the deceased set up their permanent home. The Probate Registry will look at evidence submitted to determine the “proper” law governing the devolution of the deceased’s assets – other than English real estate which is covered by English Law in any event.
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