Applying for a grant

The process for getting a grant to administer an estate can be complicated. If you wish, you can engage a solicitor or the Public Trustee to apply for you.

There are five basic steps to apply for a grant of probate, grant of letters of administration of the will and grant of letters of administration on intestacy.

For more details, see Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999, Chapter 15, rules 596–643.

Note: All forms must be typed, not handwritten.

Step 1: Advertise your intention to apply

From 24 November 2017, you will only need to advertise in the Queensland Law Reporter (QLR).

For more information, read the step by step guide on advertising available on the Incorporated Council of Law Reporting for the State of Queensland (ICLRQ) website or contact the ICLRQ on (07) 3236 1855 or at

The wording for the advertisement is outlined in Form 103 - Notice of intention to apply for grant (DOC, 26.0 KB).

Step 2: Give a copy of the notice to the Public Trustee

Post, fax, email or deliver the notice in person. Phone the Public Trustee on 1300 360 044 or visit their website for contact details.

Wait until seven days after the Public Trustee receives the notice to file your application. (For example, if they get your notice on Friday 13 March, don’t file before Monday 23 March.)

Step 3: Give people time to object

Wait for 14 clear days after your notice appears in the Queensland Law Reporter to enable people to object to your application.

You can file your application on the 15th day. If the registry is closed that day, file on the next day the registry is open. (For example, if the notice appears on Friday 13 March, you can’t file before 30 March).

Anyone claiming to have an interest in the estate can file a caveat (objection). If they have evidence, the court won’t make the grant of probate until the claim is resolved.

After a person files caveat, examination of the estate stops until the caveat process is completed. The registrar sends a notice to the person lodging the caveat and the applicant.

If a Form 118 - Notice in support of caveat (DOC, 28.5 KB) is not filed before the deadline, the registry can re-examine the application. Alternatively, you can file a Form 119 - Notice of withdrawal of caveat (DOC, 26.5 KB).

Step 4: Prepare the documents for your application

See the minimum documentation required to apply for a:

Your documents must comply with the requirements in the Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999.

Step 5: File at the Supreme Court

At this point, you can file your application and supporting document at the Supreme Court; either in person or by post.

To reduce processing time, file the documents in the Supreme Court nearest to where the deceased person lived.

Supreme Court registries are located at Brisbane, Rockhampton, Townsville and Cairns.

There is a fee for filing the application with the Supreme Court. See Uniform Civil Procedure (Fees) Regulation 2019 under the ‘Administration of estate’ section in Schedule 1.

After you lodge

After you lodge the application, court staff examine the documents and, if everything is in order, issue the grant.

Self-represented applicants

Where you as the applicant are completing the process yourself, you may collect the grant from the Registry once it is completed. You will be notified by an email from us advising you that the grant is ready for collection. If you do not have an email address, we will contact you by telephone.

If you prefer to have the grant posted back to you, you must provide at the time of filing, a stamped, self-addressed A4-sized envelope. The grant cannot be folded to fit a regular envelope and we suggest an Express or Registered post envelope be provided, however an ordinary post A4 envelope will suffice.

If you cannot collect the grant yourself and you need a friend or relative to collect the grant from the Registry, then you must give that person a copy of the email we send to you together with a letter stating that you give permission for them (stating their name) to collect the grant on your behalf. Proof of ID must be provided at the counter.

Legally represented applicants

Where you as the applicant are applying for a grant and are legally represented, then the solicitor or firm who is completing the process for you will collect the grant or if they have provided an envelope, we will post it.

In the unlikely event that you wanted to pick up the grant, you MUST produce a letter from the solicitor or firm (on the firm letterhead) who is representing you giving you permission to collect the grant.

The grant will NOT be released to you without our staff sighting the permission letter from your solicitor or firm that is completing the process for you.

Time frame

Once you file the application in the court, the grant should be ready in approximately four to six weeks. If there are any problems and you’re issued a notice of requisition, court staff will contact you, preferably by email or letter (if you don’t have an email address).


Your costs will include:

  • advertising fees
  • court filing fees
  • the fee for obtaining the original death certificate from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages

Your costs may include:

  • solicitor’s fees for document preparation and other legal work (if you have engaged a solicitor)
  • postage
  • the fees for obtaining any additional copies of the death certificate from the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages (for example, if you wanted to keep a copy). The original copy filed with the Court cannot be returned to you.