In the scenario of the deceased owner is holding the HDB flat as a tenant-in-common or sole lessee, then the next-of-kin of the deceased owner would be required by HDB to engage a private lawyer to apply to the Court for the Grant of Letter of Administration (if lessee did not leave a Will) or Grant of Letter of Administration (if there is a Will) within a year from the death of the lessee. This is because the HDB requires the deceased’s next-of-kin to be appointed by the Court to administer the deceased lessee’s HDB flat and other property.
However, if the deceased owner has passed away for more than a year and the next-of-kin of the deceased have not apply to court for either the Grant of Letter of Administration or Grant of Probate, then the next-of-kin need to appoint a private lawyer urgently to make application for the said Grants with the Court and also to write to request the HDB for extension of time for the next-of-kin of the deceased owner to obtain the said Grants.
Such a person who administer the deceased’s estate and distribute the said estate among the respective beneficiaries is called a personal representative. The personal representative is called an “executor” if he is the person appointed by the deceased in his or her Will to administer and distribute the property among the beneficiaries. If the deceased did not leave a Will, the personal representative is known as “administrator”.
Usually upon the death of the sole lessee or tenant-in common of a HDB flat, the HDB require the personal representative of the deceased lessee’s estate to apply to the Court for either the Grant of Letter of Administration or Grant of Probate.
The Grant of Letter of Administration or Grant of Probate are Court Orders which give legal authority to the administrator or executor to administer the deceased’s estate.
Upon obtaining the Grant of Letter of Administration / Grant of Probate, the personal representative will need to go the HDB branch office to vest the deceased’s HDB flat in his name as administrator/executor of the estate, a process called transmission within 6 months from the date of obtaining the Grant of Letter of Administration/Grant of Probate. The personal representative will also need to apply for the transfer of the flat to the eligible beneficiaries as owner or disposal of the flat usually by sale (if there is no one eligible to take over the flat) within 1 year from the date of transmission of the deceased’s flat to the executor/administrator.
To be continued in Part 3 of 3. Please watch out for the final part of the article.
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