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Deceased estate terms explained

Settling an Estate can be complicated and confusing. To help you make sense of the process, below are explanations of some key terms you may need to understand.



The person or persons appointed by the Supreme Court to deal with the Estate of someone who has died without a valid Will.

This is the person or persons who are authorised to instruct ANZ on how to close accounts and release funds held. Depending on the circumstances, this may be an Administrator, Executor, Next of Kin, solicitor or a state trustee.


A person or entity who is entitled to a gift or benefit as set out in a Will or to a share of a deceased person's Estate.


A document that has been confirmed as a true copy of the original. For more information about who is authorised to certify documents please see the Identification by Certified Copy for Individuals Form (PDF).


A certificate issued by the Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages, giving the date, place and cause of death and other relevant information.

The property and assets (including funds) belonging to a person who has passed away. Often simply referred to as the ‘Estate’.


An ANZ form that Authorised Estate Representatives complete to instruct ANZ how to close account(s) held by the deceased and distribute funds.

An account set up by an Authorised Estate Representatives with ANZ or another bank to manage the funds of a Deceased Estate.

The person or persons appointed in the Will to administer the Estate and carry out the deceased's wishes as set out in the Will.


A legal document issued by the Supreme Court to the Executor(s) named in the deceased’s Will. A ‘Grant of Probate’ or ‘Probate’ confirms that the Will attached to the grant of probate is the last Will of the deceased and is legal proof that the Executor is the authorised representative who can act on behalf of the Estate in accordance with the terms of the Will.


Someone who passes away without leaving a Will is said to have died ‘intestate’.


A legal document issued by the Supreme Court appointing a person to administer the Estate of a deceased person who did not leave a Will. Usually Letters of Administration are granted to the closest living relative (Next of Kin).


A certificate issued by a medical doctor who cared for the person who has passed away, stating the date, place and cause of death.


The closest living relative of the person who has passed away, eg a spouse or child.


The person or persons, such as an Executor or Administrator, authorised to sign on an account on behalf of a Deceased Estate. 

A solicitor is a type of lawyer (legal professional authorised to practise law within the relevant state or territory).

A solicitor can help families or individuals administer a Deceased Estate.


Someone who passes away having left a valid Will.


A legal document that gives instructions on how someone wishes their property and assets (including funds) to be distributed after their death and appoints a person or persons (Executor) to be their authorised representative who carries out those instructions.

This information is general in nature only and does not take into account your personal needs, financial circumstances or objectives. Please consider if it is appropriate for you and read the terms and conditions, Product Disclosure Statement and Financial Services Guide before acquiring any product.