To deal with the deceased’s estate in Scotland you need to obtain the equivalent of probate, known as ‘Confirmation’, before any money and other property belonging to the deceased can be released. It is often a bank, building society, or insurance company that will ask for this.
Confirmation is almost always needed when the person who dies leaves one or more of the following:
- £5,000 or more (although the figure can vary significantly depending upon which institution is holding the funds. In practice in some cases, Confirmation can be dispensed with in cases where the estate is worth up to £36,000, but in other cases, lower limits will apply, depending upon which institution is holding the assets)
- Stocks or shares
- Certain insurance policies
- Property or land held in their own name or jointly with another without a survivorship destination in the title.
In most cases above, the bank or relevant institution will need to see the Confirmation before transferring control of the assets. However, if the estate is small, some organizations, such as insurance companies and building societies, may release the money to you at their discretion.
Confirmation is a legal document from the court giving the Executor(s) authority to deal with the person’s land, property, money, and possessions (their ‘estate’). The application is made to the Sheriff’s Court.
When you apply for Confirmation, you need to create an Inventory. This is a full list of the deceased’s estate and one of the main considerations for probate in Scotland.
You can only apply for Confirmation in Scotland if there is money or other property in Scotland.