jersey probate law

Jersey Probate Law

If you are dealing with an estate where there are assets located in Jersey, you will need to understand the Jersey probate process so that you can release those assets.

You should note that the Jersey probate process is quite different to that of the UK and the other crown dependencies (Guernsey, Isle of Man etc).

 

Jersey Probate – what you need to know

When dealing with an estate where there are assets in Jersey, you will need to give consideration to the following:

  • The type of assets held in Jersey (whether there are immovable assets such as land/ property etc or movable assets ie cash, bank account, shares investments etc) – the different types of assets are dealt with differently in Jersey.
  • Where the deceased individual resided when they died- was this in Jersey or elsewhere? –this may affect the relevant process.
  • The value of the estate located in Jersey –this will determine if the Grant is needed and the costs.

Grant of Probate in Jersey – Do I need one?

A Jersey grant of probate allows someone to deal with the deceased’s movable estate (ie cash, bank account, shares investments).

If you are dealing with moveable assets in Jersey with a value of more than £10,000  it is likely that you will need to obtain a Jersey Grant of Probate.

If the estate is worth less than this amount, it is up to the asset holder (ie the bank or investment company) whether they will require a grant of probate. Where the deceased was domiciled outside of the UK or Channel Islands, a Jersey grant is usually required in any event.

A Jersey grant of probate doesn’t however allow you to deal with immovable assets (land/ properties etc). You’ll need to instruct a lawyer in Jersey to deal with this so that the property passes to the correct beneficiary.

It is typical to make 2 wills in Jersey, one to deal with immoveable assets and another to deal with moveable assets. (It is not necessary to appoint an executor to deal with immoveable property in Jersey).

For movable estate, there must be a named executor in the will. The executor must then apply for a grant of probate to handle the estate.

If a valid will hasn’t been left, it will be necessary for a Jersey grant of letters of administration. This would need to be obtained instead of a grant of probate so that the moveable assets in Jersey can be dealt with.

 

Applying for a Grant of Probate in Jersey

The executor names in the will must apply for a grant of probate.

If the deceased individual resided in the British Isles, the executor will need to attend personally in Jersey to deal with the estate or appointment a Jersey lawyer to act on their behalf.

If a Grant of Probate has been obtained in the UK or in another country, it is not possible to just use this in Jersey although it may be possible to use the Jersey fast-track process (also known as resealing probate in Jersey). A Jersey grant of probate must be obtained before the movable assets can be passed to the executor to administer.

To gain a grant of probate in Jersey, an individual will need to the Probate Registry and supply the following documents:

  • original will and any codicils (unless using the fast-track Jersey probate service)
  • death certificate, interim death certificate or letter of fact of death
  • official confirmation of the value of assets and debts (at date of death)
  • photographic ID for the executor (eg current passport or driving licence)

The executor will also need to take an oath.

Once the oath has been sworn and the Jersey grant to be issued, the executor can collect in the assets in Jersey to pay any debt and then distribute the estate to the relevant beneficiaries.

 

Costs of Obtaining Jersey Probate

There is no inheritance tax in Jersey but stamp duty based on the value of the assets in Jersey will need to be paid unless the estate is worth less than £10,000.

The stamp duty rates are:

Sworn Value of Jersey Estate Stamp Duty Payable
Up to £10,000 £0.00
Exceeding £10,000 but not exceeding £100,000 £50 per £10,000 or part of £10,000
Exceeding £100,000 but not exceeding £13,360,000 £500 in respect of first £100,000 plus £75 per additional £10,000 or part of £10,000
Exceeding £13,360,000 Capped at £100,000

Estates with Beneficiaries located in Jersey

If you are dealing with an estate where a beneficiary is resident in Jersey, you should undertake a bankruptcy search in Jersey before making any distributions to them.

 

Navigating probate law in Jersey can be difficult and it is usual to instruct a Jersey lawyer to assist you with this. If you are dealing with an estate where there are assets in Jersey, Worldwide Lawyers will be delighted to help. Please contact us on 01244 470 339 or at info@worldwidelawyers.co.uk and we will be happy to assist you with dealing with an estate whether there are assets in Jersey and with obtaining a Jersey Grant of Probate of Letters of Administration.