Stage 2 – Administering the Estate:
This can be the hard part. Basically what you are looking to do now is to carry out the wishes of the deceased. If they left a Will then you should be trying to do what the Will says. If they didn’t leave a Will then there are rules (called the rules of intestacy) which set out who should receive what from the estate.
On a basic level you will need to gather in assets of the estate (so get money out of bank accounts, maybe sell shares, maybe sell property), pay off any debts of the estate, and distribute what’s left according to the Will or rules of intestacy. You will also have to send a copy of the Grant of Representation to certain organisations so they can amend their records to show that the person has died. You may well also have to file tax returns with HMRC.
This can take anything from a matter of days to many years. For example, if you just have to close one bank account and pass the proceeds to a surviving spouse of the deceased, then it should be quite quick. But if there are properties or businesses to sell, the process can take some time and will require care. If the Will is carelessly drafted then this can complicate things still further.