Deceased Estate Lawyers in Newcastle & Lake Macquarie

During this emotional time, you need clarity about your obligations and rights. Our experienced team can guide you with a clear plan.

Speak directly with a deceased estate expert today.

We’ll provide clarity about your obligations or rights, then manage the process for you so that it won’t take longer than necessary.

The death of a loved one is an emotional and stressful time. Berryman Partners is here to assist in every step of the administration process for deceased estates.

Our experienced solicitors can guide you through the administration process of deceased estates and take the stress out of the legal requirements. We can help you to interpret the wishes of your loved one and ensure that the estate is distributed in a fair manner.

If you are a beneficiary of a Will and believe there may be an issue with the Will, visit out of Will Disputes and Estate Claims page for more information.

Experience & Testimonials

Deceased Estates Services

Deceased Estates: The administration of a deceased estate is a complex process, which coincides with an emotional time. Often someone appoints a friend or relative as their executor, but these duties can be quite complicated and many people nominated are unsure of what is expected of them. Our experienced solicitors can guide you through the administration process and take the stress out of the legal requirements.


Will Disputes & Estate Claims: It is not uncommon for disputes to arise concerning the wishes of the deceased. Whether you’re seeking to contest a Will or you are an executor dealing with a dispute, we have the knowledge and experience to protect your rights and interests to ensure that you receive a just outcome.

The death of a loved one is an emotional and stressful time. Berryman Partners has years of experience assisting clients with the administration process.

If you believe there is a problem with a Will or that you haven’t been adequately provided for, Berryman Partners is here to help.

Frequently Asked Questions

Many of the executor’s tasks should be performed with the assistance of a solicitor, as there are strict legal requirements that accompany these responsibilities. These include the order in which debts of the estate are to be discharged and the amount of time that must pass before the assets are distributed. Our experienced solicitors can guide you through the administration and assist you in negotiating disputes if they arise. There are also certain rights that executors are entitled to and we can help protect them.

Probate is the process by which the Court determines the validity of a Will and grants authority to the executor to administer the deceased’s estate. There is no legal requirement to seek probate, but there is a legal requirement to seek probate where real estate is required to be sold. However, a bank will usually require a grant of probate before releasing the funds from a deceased’s bank account. A grant of probate can only be issued by the Supreme Court.

Where the deceased has not left a Will, there is a legal formula which is applied to determine who shares in the estate of the deceased:

The deceased’s spouse (including de facto partner) will take the whole of the estate where there are no children.

Where the deceased has children of a former relationship, the estate is shared between the current spouse and the children.

Where there is no spouse, the estate is divested to the children of the deceased, or the surviving next of kin.

Where there are no surviving next of kin, the estate is divested to the State.

There also may be problems with the Will, or situations where the Will may become invalid. If you’re a beneficiary and believe there may be a problem with the validity of the Will, you should seek the advice of a solicitor.

There are a number of grounds on which it may be possible to contest a Will:

Family Provision Claim = eligible people can challenge the Will a specific category of people, as defined at law, can challenge a will if they were either left out or did not receive appropriate provision under the Will. This includes the deceased’s spouse and children.

Lack of testamentary capacity = if the deceased did not have capacity to create the Will at the time it was made.

Undue influence = if there is evidence that the deceased was pressured or
coerced into signing the Will.

Breach of trust = if the executor of the estate is administering the estate improperly.

People that can make a claim against the estate for further provision include:

Spouse (including de facto partner)

A former spouse

A natural or adopted child

Step-child (in limited circumstances)

Parent, brother or sister (in limited circumstances)

A grandchild (in limited circumstances)

A person who was living in a close personal relationship with the deceased person at the time of their death

A person who was, at the time, wholly or partly financially dependent on the deceased person.

Newcastle & Lake Macquarie Deceased Estate Legal Team

David Berryman

Chris Berryman

Liz McIntyre

Jessica Benson