If you are in a situation where you intend to oppose a will or grant of probate (“grant”) you may enter a Caveat. Caveat is defined in Section 33 of Probate and Administration Act 1959 as follows:
‘any person having, or claiming to have, any interest may, at any time after the death of a deceased person and before representation has been granted to his estate, enter a general caveat in the prescribed form, so that no representation shall be granted without notice to the caveator and after entry of any such caveat no representation shall be made until the caveator has been given the opportunity to contest the right of any petitioner to representation.’
The procedure for caveats can be referred to in O.71, r.37 of Rules of Court 2012 which will be explained briefly in this article. An entry of a caveat by Caveator is to ensure that no grant is made without notice to Caveator. Caveator may file a caveat using Form 164 in the Registry and obtain an acknowledgment of entry from the proper officer or send it by post at his own risk to the Registry. The name of the Caveator shall be stated upon the entry of a caveat by the solicitor on behalf of the Caveator. Caveat shall remain in force for six (6) months from the date on which it is entered and shall then cease to have an effect, without prejudice to the entry of a further caveat or caveats. Due to the entry of a Caveat, Registrar shall not make any grant except on the day the caveat is filed.
Registrar shall forward a copy of the caveat and give notice in Form 158 to the Registrar of the Principal Registry and notify the Applicant of the grant (Caveatee) in regard to the entry of a caveat. The Caveatee may object to the caveat by filing a warning using Form 165. The warning must be served on the Caveator and the Registrar of the Principal Registry. Thereafter, the Caveator must enter an appearance after being notified of the warning within eight (8) days of service of the warning on the Caveator and the appearance must be served on the Caveatee and filed in the court.