An oath for English Probate

Help needed. I need to swear an oath for completion of an English Probate. I have phoned the Probate Court and they have said that I am allowed to do get it done in France. I need to know who would undertake such an operation and is there one near me Dept (40) They would also probably have to speak English to as the forms are in English.

Hello Maurice,

I am glad that all went smoothly and apprecoiate your letting me know.

It was my pleasure to assist you and your wife - I hope her wrist is getting better fast.



A very Big thank you for you time and trouble.

Just to let you know that we received the approved grant of Probate today.

Kindest Regards


Happy Cbristmas David :slight_smile:

Maurice, Strangely I have met recently in local town, an English woman in same position as you. She has been told that the local Notaires properly stamped witnessed document is acceptable. Sorry probably not using right jargon here, but go and speak to your local Notaire!

Hello Maurice,

I am happy to do this for you.

Please give me a call on 05 57 46 03 15 to arrange when...

I would like to take you up on your offer. I have found you on the map and it is only about an hours drive from me.

let us repeat the.....oh no it's Christmas.....

How stupid can I be!

I am not a British Columbian lawyer...

Not sure about that. I thought you needed a practicing certificate

Here is a link to the Professional rules

Hi Maurice,

I am a retired English solicitor living near Ste-Foy-la-Grande (33220). I am still on the roll of solicitors and the last I knew it was not necessary for a solicitor (provided he remains on the roll) to have a practising certificate in order to take an oath.

If you can find no-one nearer and you can get to me, I will be happy to do it for you. Alternatively, a notaire should suffice.

There is no doubt about that

Please read it again. I definitely stated that I am allowed to get it done in France.

The oath is needed to get a grant of probate without which the assets cannot be dealt with, so generally would be needed within a few months of the death. The two year period is only relevant for inheritance tax if the beneficiaries want to vary the will. It has no direct relevance to the process of probate or the length of time taken to administer an estate. The separate qualification of "commissioner for oaths" was abolished some years ago and all solicitors are able to swear oaths.

Why are you asking asbout getting it done in France when you actually state you have been told it cannot be done here. In the UK you can go to a commissioner for oaths or to the probate office. There are not so many of the latter as there used to be (cuts) but there are plenty of commissioner for oaths. You have two years in which to complete probate. Surely this can be linked to a visit to the UK.

Any English solicitor can deal with an oath. Depending where you are, you might well find one with a second home nearby. I actually have the same issue, and while I know several retired solicitors living wholly or partly in France one needs to find one with a practicing certificate.

It is though also correct that a notaire should be able to do it, just as Notaries in the UK deal with the execution of foreign documents. They do not necessarily need to understand all the text.

Yes I think a notaire can do this as he is only witnessing that it is you signing. You will need proof of ID of course. One local notaire here does not charge a fee for such work but likes a nice bottle of wine!!! The notaire is not involved in drawing up the document.

Failing that, in the presence of a recognised translator your local notaire ought to be happy to do the job

At the top of this page under the SFN logo you will see USEFUL LINKS, put your cursor over that, take it down to LEGAL, click on that and then look through what that offers. Some way down the page you will find a link to the site on inheritance under which you may well find details about probate. Other links on that page may help as well.