Letters of Administration

It can be confusing when a loved one dies without a Will. Let us guide you through the process.

If a person dies without a Will their estate is governed by the laws of intestacy which set out how the estate will be divided among surviving family members. The first step is to obtain a Grant of Letters of Administration. This will give you authority to administer the estate.

The grant is just the start. You’ll then need to collect the assets, pay liabilities and distribute the estate according to the formula established by law. 

This is no small feat and can be overwhelming if you’ve never done it before. From getting the grant to administering the whole estate, our experienced team can help.

our services

How we can help you

From getting the grant to administering the whole estate, our team can offer as much help as you need.



This package offers an application for Letters of Administration, personalised advice on how to administer the estate from our expert probate lawyers and a customised step-by-step guide to explain exactly what to do next.

This package includes:

  • An application for Letters of Administration by a beneficiary of the estate
  • Preparing consent notices, as required
  • Signing and witnessing your application
  • Court filing and giving you the grant
  • A conference with our experienced probate lawyers to give you personalised advice on how to administer the estate
  • A customised step-by-step guide summarising our advice

Allow 2 hours for the conference.

Plus court filing fee $370.

Prefer us to handle everything for you? Find out more.

Guided DIY


Unlike services offering document kits or templates, our expert probate lawyers will prepare your application and send it to you to sign. Get started any time using our online form.

This package includes:

  • An application for Letters of Administration by a beneficiary of the estate
  • Preparing consent notices, as required
  • 15 minute telephone call with our experienced team
  • Instructions for you to sign and file your application at the Court

The Court will charge you a filing fee of $370.

This service is not suitable for complex applications.

Do you need a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration?

A Grant gives you authority to collect the assets and administer the estate. 

Legal guide

Need help with an estate?

Our plain-English legal guide has comprehensive and practical advice to help you to take charge and finalise the estate.


A Grant of Letters of Administration is a document issued by the Court authorising a person to administer the estate of person who died intestate (without leaving a valid Will).

The Grant authorises the person (known as the administrator) to administer the estate by collecting the assets, paying liabilities and distributing the estate in accordance with the laws of intestacy.

Any one or more of the adult beneficiaries of the estate (as set out in the Administration Act 1903 (WA)) can apply for a grant of Letters of Administration of an intestate estate.

The applicant must seek written consent from any adult beneficiary of the estate.

If there is no adult beneficiary who is able to apply, another person may be entitled. Book a consultation for advice about your specific circumstances.

In most cases we can prepare your application and arrange for you to sign it on the spot at your consultation. It will then take the Supreme Court of Western Australia 6 – 8 weeks to review your application and issue a Grant.

Please bring the documents and information listed on the relevant checklist.

An applicant for a grant of Letters of Administration must provide a statement of the deceased’s assets and liabilities as at the date of their death. The statement must include all real estate in Western Australia and all movable property and debts, whether in Western Australia or elsewhere.

Any property the deceased owned as a joint tenant with another person who survived them does not form part of their estate, rather it passes to the surviving joint tenant by survivorship.

Download our checklist to help you collate the information you need.

As a general rule, the answer is yes – executors and administrators can charge their reasonable legal costs to the estate. What is reasonable depends on the circumstances, but would generally include the costs of making an application for Probate or Letters of Administration.

Our advertised fees are for straightforward applications prepared on the spot during your consultation. They don’t include the Supreme Court of Western Australia filing fee. If your application is not straightforward or if you require additional legal advice or assistance we will give you a quote for our services. For full terms see our Product Disclosure Statement.

Why choose us

We provide great service at competitive prices.
We make it easy for you

We offer practical guidance at every step.  Read what our clients say.

Share the burden

Let us take over the administrative work so you don’t have to worry.

Industry experts

We’ve helped hundreds of people administer estates, both large and small.

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Meet our team

We’re a tight-knit, multi-disciplinary team of lawyers, legal executives, accountants and software developers.  We’re also passionate community leaders, sportspeople, podcasters, musicians, parents… and proud that these interests inform our professional lives.

Legal Practitioner Director
Michael has been practising law in Western Australia since 1997 and is an experienced lawyer in property law, family law and succession law. Michael has a strong base of knowledge and experience from assisting hundreds of clients in these……
Senior Associate
Nigel is an experienced lawyer who leads the firm’s litigation and dispute resolution team. Having worked for Birman & Ride since 2011, he has experience in a wide variety of litigation matters including deceased estate litigation, family provision claims,……
Senior Associate
Lucy is a talented lawyer, business administrator and manager who leads the development of the firm’s consumer legal services, bringing together people, technology and processes to design and deliver innovative legal services. In the legal sphere, Lucy supervises the……
Carolina joined Birman & Ride in the firm’s Wills and Probate team in December 2020. She is passionate about helping clients prepare and plan for the welfare of their dependants when they are no longer around. As the parent……
Jennifer graduated from the University of Western Australia in 2015 with bachelor degrees in Law and Arts (majoring in Philosophy). Jennifer joined the Birman & Ride team in May 2019 and works in the firm’s Wills and Probate team…….
Sriram Srikrishnan (Sri) is a lawyer at Birman & Ride and works in the Wills and Estates and Litigation teams. Sri assists people to prepare Wills, applications for Probate and administer deceased estates. He also enjoys being creative with……
Legal Executive
Natalie joined the Birman & Ride team in late 2020 after completing her Bachelor of Laws at Edith Cowan University. Natalie has quickly settled into her role with the firm and is a confident and charismatic member of both……


What our clients say

I downloaded the booklet “How to Manage a Deceased Estate” which was very useful. I subsequently had contact with lawyer, Jennifer Nguyen and was advised what information to bring to the appointment for applying for Probate. As there were some issues I was unsure of, it was very helpful to be able to talk them through with Jennifer so the application process by the Supreme Court went through without a hitch. Follow up contact was appropriate. I would highly recommend this service to anyone needing to apply for Probate. Excellent service.
Ms B
April 3, 2021
Hi Michael, thank you for the effort and good service you have provided. I will definitely be looking at setting up a will.
Mr K
March 17, 2021
Thank you for your help today. It was great to have someone guide us through the procedures and helping us lodge our paperwork. Having someone offering advice on certain matters was much appreciated.
Ms M
February 23, 2021
A professional and efficient service at a reasonable fee and conducted from one side of the world to the other in these strange pandemic times.
Mr R
February 16, 2021
Thank you for your help and explaining what to do regarding my father’s estate.
Thank you for your help
January 13, 2021
Michael Hodgkins is the Legal Adviser in this case. Very personalised & professional, friendly and trustworthy. Very prompt & punctual. Explanations are simple without any jargon. Always helpful and prompt in undertaking any tasks. Gives confidence & reassurance. Above all , the price is right. Thank you Michael.
Mr V
January 9, 2021

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    Our plain-English guide How to manage a deceased estate has practical advice to help you to take charge and finalise the estate.