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If you decide to use or rely on the information or make decisions based on the information in this website (which VLA does not recommend) VLA is not liable to you or any third party in any way for any loss, damage, costs or expenses you or they may suffer or incur as a result.

Inspecting a Will

Who can look at a Will and when.

Once a Will has been granted probate (proved) anyone can inspect it. It becomes a public document. Any person can get a copy of any Will they choose from the Probate Office for a fee.

However, if a person wants to challenge a Will they may want to inspect it before it becomes a public document.

Before the Will is admitted to probate

After the death of the Will-maker, a person who has possession and control of a Will must allow the document to be viewed by the following people, if requested:

  • a person named in the Will (regardless of whether they are a beneficiary)
  • a person named in an earlier (revoked) version of a Will
  • a spouse or domestic partner of testator at time of their death
  • a parent, guardian or child of deceased
  • anyone who would have been entitled to benefit if person had died without leaving a Will
  • a parent or guardian of a person under 18 who was referred to in the Will or would have been entitled to benefit had the person died without leaving a Will
  • a creditor or other person who has a claim in equity or in law (evidence of this is required).

See s. 50—Wills Act 1997 (Vic).

Getting a copy of Will

A person wishing to view the Will may also make copies of these documents at their own expense. This includes a Will that has been revoked or made without proper execution.

How to see if probate or letters of administration have been granted

The Supreme Court of Victoria has a public register that allows people to find out whether a will has been admitted to probate.

See Supreme Court—Probate registers or Supreme Court—Searching probate records.

More information

Legislation

Wills Act 1997 (Vic)

Applies to Wills that were made after 20 July 1998.

  • s. 3—definitions of spouse and domestic partner
  • s. 50—who may see the Will

See Wills Act 1997 (Vic).

Updated