Search probate records for documents and wills (England and Wales)

Find a probate record, also known as a ‘grant of representation’, for someone who died after 1857.

Probate gives someone the legal right to deal with a deceased person’s property, money and possessions (their ‘estate’).

A new probate record will be online approximately 14 days after probate has been issued.

There’s a different process in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

You can use this service to:

  • search for a probate record in England and Wales
  • check if probate has been issued
  • check the type of probate issued
  • order a copy of a probate record (including a will, if there is one)

Each copy of a probate record ordered online costs £1.50.

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Before you start

Wills and probate records from 1858 to 1996

If you cannot find the record you’re looking for, check the years after the person died. These records are stored under the year the grant was issued, rather than the year of death.

To find the will of someone who died in the early 1990s, you may need to check the records that cover 1996 onwards.

Probate records that include a will

Not all probate records contain a will. Check the type of grant of representation when you search.

The grant types that contain a will include:

  • ‘Probate’ or ‘Grant and Will’
  • ‘Admon with Will’ or ‘Grant and Will’

‘Administration (Admon) or Grant’ does not contain a will.

Search for a probate record by post

Download and fill in form PA1S to search for a probate record by post. Send it to the address on the form.

It costs £1.50 for a search by post. This includes a copy of the probate record and will (if there is one).

You should get a response within 4 weeks.

If the person died in the last 6 months

Probate may not have been granted yet. You can use form PA1S to ask to be sent a copy of a probate if it’s granted in the next 6 months. This is called a ‘standing search’. It costs £3.

You can extend the standing search after 6 months.