Posted: Friday, 4 January 2019 @ 13:43
What is the procedure for issuing a caveat?
A caveat can be lodged at any
Probate Registry; this does not need to be at the probate
registry local to the deceased.
The Probate Registry will need:
• The deceased's name, date of
death and address;
• The name and address of the
• The request for the caveat to be
signed by the caveator or their solicitor;
A fee of £20
The caveat is then valid for six
months. It can be renewed at the end of this period on
payment of a further fee.
How can the caveat be removed?
The caveator can remove the caveat
at any time by writing to the Probate Registry. Given this a legal letter may
be a good idea informing the individual that it is an abuse of proceedings to
issue a Caveat inappropriately (see Parnall v Hurst  WTLR 997.)
Any interested person may
therefore issue a “warning” to the caveator. A warning is a notice to the
caveator and must be in the prescribed form. A warning can only be entered at
the Leeds District Probate Registry.
There is no fee for issuing a warning to a
The person issuing the warning
must state the nature of his interest and the date of the Will (if any) in the
warning and it must be served on the caveator in accordance with specific rules
as to service. The warning must also require the caveator to state the nature
of his interest.
Once the warning has been served
on the caveator, one of the four things will happen depending on what right the
caveator is alleging and what steps he chooses to take:
1. The caveator may withdraw his
caveat – this can be done at any time before he enters an appearance to the
warning. When a warning has been issued, then the caveator must give notice of
his withdrawal to the person issuing the warning. The caveat must be withdrawn
at the registry in which it was entered. No fee is payable upon the withdrawal
of the caveat.
2. The caveator may enter an
“appearance” – an appearance should be entered in the prescribed form at the
Leeds District Probate Registry within eight days of service of the warning on
the caveator. If the caveator does not enter an appearance then the person
issuing the warning may take steps to “warn off” the caveator. Once an
appearance has been entered, the caveat remains in force until a District Judge
(or, when the parties consent to the discontinuance of the caveat, a registrar)
otherwise directs. There is no fee for entering an appearance.
3. The caveator may issue and
serve a summons for directions – this must be done within eight days of service
of the warning, otherwise the caveator risks being warned off. Please note that
a summons for directions may only be issued by a caveator who has no interest
contrary to that of the person issuing the warning. After a summons for
directions has been issued there will be a hearing before a District Judge at which
he will decide to whom a grant should be made.
4. A caveator may do nothing – in
this case the person issuing the warning may file an affidavit in the Leeds
District Probate registry after the eight-day time-limit for entering an
appearance has expired. The affidavit must show that the warning was served on
the caveator. The caveat is then said to be “warned off” and is no longer
effective so that the person issuing the warning is then free to proceed with
When A Caveat Should Not Be Lodged? 1) A caveat should not be lodged by an outsider who has no interest in the estate. If a complete outsider lodges a caveat he will be unable to enter an appearance as he/she will be unable to state what his/her interest contrary to that person warning. Thus that person could be at risk of a costs order being made by the probate registrar. 2) Where a caveator intends to make an application for provision under under the Inheritance and Family Dependants Act 1975. The potential applicant under the 1975 Act claim will wish to know when the grant has been issued in order to avoid missing the 6 month time limit and can do so by entering a standing search.