To help, we've put together a list of common terms and phrases below. 

Administering a person's estate
The legal process of dealing with someone's estate after they've died. This involves identifying and valuing all of the person's assets (their money, property and belongings), paying any debts and taxes due, then sharing out what's left.

Also known as executor dative in Scotland, this is the person who has authority to deal with an Estate when there isn't a Will. Legislation sets out the order of priority for who can apply to be an administrator/executor dative. At the top of the order of priority is the spouse/registered civil partner of the deceased, then any child of the deceased. 

Death certificate
This can either be the interim death certificate, issued by a qualified doctor or coroner, or the death certificate issued by the registrar after registering the death. Both documents will confirm the date, location and cause of the person's death, if known. 

Everything a deceased person owned makes up their estate.  This includes, for example, savings, property, shares and investments, pensions, their car, jewellery, household items, etc. 

Usually the person(s) named in a Will, who can deal with the Estate following a person's death. 

Grant of probate
Also known as a certificate of confirmation in Scotland. Where there's a Will, this is the legal document which gives the executor(s) named in the Will the authority to administer the deceased person's Estate. Depending on the value of the Estate you may not need to apply for probate/confirmation. 

Letters of administration
Where there's no Will in England and Wales, the person most entitled under legislation to administer the deceased person's Estate can apply to the court for letters of administration. Where there's no Will in Scotland, an application should be made for a certificate of confirmation. 

Personal representative
A person who has the legal authority to administer a person's Estate after their death.