Registering a Will at the Probate Registry in Nigeria

Registering a Will at the Probate Registry in Nigeria

February 22, 2024

When a will is executed by the testator, it is important for it to be registered at the Probate Registry of the High Court. This is because, for an executor of a Will to obtain probate from the probate registry after a testator/testatrix dies, the court will require an original copy of the will.

In a case where the will is kept in the possession of the executor or any other place, it is to be taken to the probate registry within three (3) months of the death of the testator/testatrix.

A testator/testatrix may personally lodge a will at the probate registry, or engage the services of a solicitor to do same. In either case, the process is as follows:

  1. An application letter is to be addressed to the Probate Registrar, High Court of Lagos State. This letter must be dated and signed by the applicant, and if the applicant is a Lawyer, it must have an NBA Seal.

This letter must contain important details such as the date and place of birth of the testator/testatrix.

  1. The application must be accompanied by:
    • A photocopy of a valid ID of the testator/testatrix (the original ID must also be presented at the point of application);
    • A valid ID of the Applicant (if the applicant is a person other than the testator/testatrix);
    • Passport photographs of the testator/testatrix and the applicant 9if the applicant is a person other than the testator/testatrix)
  2. The application must also be accompanied by the will, which must be enveloped, properly sealed and waxed.
  3. The lodgement fees must also be paid to the Lagos State Government. It is important to confirm the cost at the point of filing an application, as these costs are usually subject to change.
  4. An official payment receipt is issued, which must be kept, as this could be required to retrieve the will for reading, or when lodging a codicil at the Registry.

The probate registry is a secure place for ensuring safe custody of wills, as it reduces the possibility of the will falling into the wrong hands until the grant of probate by the same registry.

In conclusion, wherever a testator/testatrix decides to keep his will, it is imperative that the executor is aware, and can easily access it when the need arises.

Team 618 Bees



The information in this blog post (“post”) is provided for general informational purposes only, no information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through this post without seeking the appropriate legal or professional advice from the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer. This post is protected by intellectual property law and regulations. It may however be shared using appropriate sharing tools provided that our authorship is always acknowledged and this Disclaimer Notice attached

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