Making an applicationHow do I apply for a grant when the deceased was an Isle of Man resident? | What about when the deceased died domiciled outside the Isle of Man? | The application form | How do I determine the value of the estate? | Will I have to attend the General Registry in person? | Address for service | Probate Fees | What happens to the original documents I submit in support of my application?
22. How do I apply for a grant when the deceased was an Isle of Man resident?
The basic stages for applying for a grant are set out below:
- obtain the Application Form (Word) (PDF). Guidance notes to assist with completion of the application form are available here.
- complete the application form
- obtain the required supporting documentation, in particular an original or Registry issued certified copy death certificate and the original will (if applicable)
- the application needs to be sworn or affirmed before a Commissioner for Oaths. This can be done by any person empowered to administer oaths (for example, an advocate or Justice of the Peace) or by staff at the public counter on payment of the prescribed fee - see easy reference guide to probate fees.
- Please note that if the application is supported by a will, the will also needs to be freshly marked (signed) on the front page by both the applicant or applicants and by the Commissioner for Oaths before whom the application is sworn or affirmed (see Swearing of Affidavits for more information).
- calculate the appropriate application fee, depending on the value of the estate and the number of additional requirements (for example, the number of certified copies required), in accordance with the fees prescribed by the Court Fees Order currently in force (details can be found on the easy reference guide to probate fees.
- lodge the application form and the appropriate fee, together with any supporting documentation, at the public counter. Alternatively, you may post your completed application to:-The Probate OfficeIsle of Man Courts of JusticeDeemsters Walk, Bucks RoadDouglas, Isle of ManIM1 3ARPlease do not send cash through the post; cheques should be made payable to “Isle of Man Government”.
You should keep a copy of the completed application form, and any other documents that you submit, when you lodge your application.
23. What about when the deceased died domiciled outside the Isle of Man?
The word domicile, generally speaking, means the place where the deceased had his permanent home. The procedure for applying is similar in most respects as if the deceased had been an Isle of Man resident, however there are some additional documents required to support the application.
In the event that the original will, providing it covers the deceased’s estate in the Isle of Man, has already been submitted to the court having jurisdiction at the place where the deceased died domiciled, the application must be supported by a court sealed or a court certified copy of both the will and the grant from the issuing registry, along with a death certificate. A court sealed copy will bear the raised or coloured seal of the issuing Registry or Court; a court certified copy will be marked with the signature of the issuing officer certifying that the document is a true copy of the original document. Please note it is not sufficient to submit plain copies of the documents.
If the deceased left more than one will, and one of the wills covered the estate in the Isle of Man, the original will covering the estate in the Isle of Man must be submitted with the application together with copies of any other wills the deceased left.
In all instances the will, whether it be an original, a court sealed copy or a court certified copy that is submitted with the application, must be freshly marked (signed) on the front page by both the applicant(s) and the Commissioner for Oaths before whom the application is sworn, irrespective of the fact that if it is a court sealed or a court certified copy it will already have been marked when Probate was applied for where the deceased died domiciled.
In the event that the deceased died intestate (had no will), the application must be supported by a court sealed copy or a court certified copy of the grant of administration from the issuing registry where the deceased died domiciled. Again, please note it is not sufficient to simply submit a plain copy.
Failure to provide either court sealed or court certified copies, or failure to have the document freshly marked (signed) by both the applicant(s) and the Commissioner for Oaths, will result in delays in processing the application as the documents will have to be returned to the address for service for the necessary requirements to be complied with.
The address for service must be an address in the Isle of Man. For further information in relation to the address for service, please see the section headed Address for service in the information sheet.
24. The application form
There is only one application form to complete, however depending on the circumstances you may need to supply additional documentation in support of your application. The probate application form asks for details of the deceased and the applicant or applicants.
There are Guidance Notes to assist with completion of the application form. The Guidance Notes, which include details of the fees payable, can be viewed here and are available for you to download if required.
25. How do I determine the value of the estate?
The form asks you to indicate the gross value of the estate of the deceased in the Isle of Man at the date of death. The probate fee (see easy reference guide to probate fees here) for lodging the application is based on the gross value of the estate, however please note that if the gross value of the estate is not indicated on the application form the maximum probate fee will be charged.
You should try to obtain the full value of everything in the Isle of Man owned by the deceased or due to him from any source at the date of his death (whether or not it has already been received) including any interest or bonus which will be paid, except property nominated in favour of any person and joint property if the deceased’s share passed by survivorship. An example of property nominated in favour of a person may be a pension scheme which provides for certain benefits due on death to be paid to a nominee without requiring a grant to be produced, however determining whether or not the value of certain property should be included can be very complex and therefore you should seek legal advice if you are in any doubt.
“Gross value” means the estimated price an item would fetch if sold at the date of the deceased’s death. Stocks and shares should be valued at the price at which they were quoted on the Stock Exchange on the day of death.
26. Will I have to attend the General Registry in person?
All applications can be dealt with via the postal system, however the Probate Office may in certain circumstances ask an applicant (or applicants) to attend in person in order to clarify certain points or gain further information.
However, if you wish to hand-deliver your application to the public counter, the staff will assist by checking that all the application form has been completed, although please note the staff will not be able to comment or advise on the actual answers you provide in response to the questions on the application form.
You may also attend the public counter to swear or affirm the application before a Commissioner for Oaths, if you have not already done so elsewhere. This service will be carried out by the staff at the public counter on payment of the prescribed fee (see easy reference guide to probate fees).
27. Address for service
Every application is required to state an address for service in the Isle of Man, irrespective of where the applicant or applicants live. Once an application has been made, the Probate Office will send all further correspondence or documents to the nominated address for service.
If there is no personal representative of the deceased in the Isle of Man you may wish to seek the permission of the organisation in the Isle of Man, with which the assets of the deceased are deposited, to use their address. Organisations will normally grant permission for this, however the onus is on the applicant to check with the organisation first.
If permission has been gained from an organisation on the Isle of Man to use their address as the address for service for the application, it would assist if the applicant could establish the person’s name in the organisation to whom the grant should be sent. This should be indicated on the application form and will help to ensure the grant is sent directly to the correct person and therefore prevent any delays in the organisation releasing whatever assets of the deceased they hold.
28. Probate Fees
Please remember when calculating the fee payable to include the cost of any additional requirements you may have (for example, 5 additional copies of the grant in addition to the application fee).
29. What happens to the original documents I submit in support of my application?
All documents supplied in support of the application (for example the original will, death certificate, etc.) will be permanently retained by the Court. Once the grant has been issued, all the information provided as part of the application will be available for public inspection in the Deeds and Probate Registry.
Once the grant has been issued any person may obtain copies of any document submitted, from the Deeds and Probate Registry, on payment of the prescribed fee (see easy reference guide to probate fees).