CHARLES COOPER REVIEWS THE USE OF CAVEATS AND STANDING SEARCHES AND A RECENT CHANGE TO THE NON-CONTENTIOUS PROBATE RULES
From November 2018 an online application can be made to the Probate Registry for Caveats or Standing Searches in a deceased’s estate (see: Non-Contentious Probate (Amendment) Rules 2018).
A Caveat enables the applicant to stop a Probate application but is a relatively draconian tool which should only be used where there is a dispute as to who can apply for Probate, or as to the validity or existence of a Will.
A Standing Search gives notification to the applicant when a Grant of Probate has been issued, and a copy of that Grant, which is a more useful tool for Inheritance Act claims where limitation runs from the date of issue of the Grant or where the applicant simply wishes to know the identity of the Personal Representative(s) and the value of the estate.
It seems likely that the use of Caveats and Standing Searches will increase with the introduction of an online application process.
[Charles practised as a Solicitor and Higher Court Advocate before being called to the Bar, and specialises in tax, trusts, wills and probate.]