module specification

LC7028 - Wills and Administration of Estates (2023/24)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2023/24
Module title Wills and Administration of Estates
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 2
School Guildhall School of Business and Law
Total study hours 20
2 hours Guided independent study
18 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Oral Examination 100%   Oral interview - recorded - see above
Running in 2023/24

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Autumn semester North Tuesday Evening
Autumn semester North Tuesday Afternoon
Autumn semester North Tuesday Afternoon
Autumn semester North Thursday Evening
Autumn semester North Thursday Afternoon
Autumn semester North Friday Morning
Autumn semester North Friday Afternoon

Module summary

 This module focuses on the law and practice of probate and intestacy. It is assessed through the skill of interviewing.

The module aims to equip students with the knowledge and confidence required to work on transactions on the first day of their training contract as a solicitor.

Prior learning requirements

Qualifying Law Degree



(a) Identify property passing by will and/or intestacy or outside of the estate.
(b) The validity of wills and codicils.
(c) Revocation.
(d) Intestacy - total and partial.
(e) Ascertain value of assets and liabilities and the taxable estate.


(a) The necessity for a grant and its effect.
(b) Main types of grant - Probate, Letters of Administration (simple and with will).
(c) The powers and duties of personal representatives and their protection (e.g. s.27 notices).

(d) Revenue requirements:
• Is an IHT Account necessary?
• If so, completing IHT Form.
• Where necessary, prepare simple IHT calculation.
(e) Court requirements:
• Main types of Oath - for Executors or Administrators (simple administration and with will).
• Lodge the necessary papers at the Probate Registry.


(a) Collect and realise assets.
(b) Pay debts.
(c) Pay pecuniary legacies and vest gifted property in beneficiaries entitled.
(d) Prepare accounts.
(e) Distribute residuary estate.

Covers all Learning Outcomes

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Students are taught in a combination of pre-recorded Tutor led sessions and 2-hour long student led sessions.  They are also provided with recorded role-play assessments on WebLearn.  Students sit a formative assessment by way of a recorded role play of an interview with a client and are given feedback.

Learning outcomes

 Students should have a general overview of the content, format and validity of wills, obtaining grants of representation and administration of an estate and should be familiar with the purpose and general structure of the relevant documents and should be able to:

1. use the legal knowledge, skills, procedures and behaviours appropriate to the client
2. identify the client's goals and alternative means of achieving those goals, and deal
appropriately with client care
3. recognise and act within the rules of professional conduct
4. identify the client’s reasonable expectations as to quality and timeliness of service.

Element 1: Pre-grant Practice

Students should understand:

1. validity, revocation and alteration of wills and codicils
2. total and partial intestacy
3. identification of property passing by will, intestacy or outside of the estate
4. understand which beneficiaries survived the testator and if gifts fail for other reasons
5. valuation of assets and liabilities and the taxable estate
6. be able to assess what, if any, pre grant steps are necessary.

Element 2: Application for a Grant of Representation

Students should understand:

1. the necessity for and main types of a grant
2. the powers and duties of personal representatives and their protection
3. the main types of oath for executors or administrators.

Element 3: Post-grant Practice

Students should understand:

1. collection and realisation of assets, and claims on the estate
2. raising funds and the payment of inheritance tax and debts
3. understand how to calculate Inheritance Tax on death
4. pecuniary legacies, vesting of gifted property in the beneficiaries entitled and
distribution of the residuary estate
5. be able to identify possible claims to a Will and/or intestacy under Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975.

Assessment strategy

 Formative interviews are undertaken each week as this is an LPC Skills assessment.

Students are able to assess themselves by watching formative the interviews.

Students are then assessed by way of a 20-minute tape-recorded role-play interview with an actor.


 Basic Texts
Legal Foundations Manual, University of Law Publishing

Online Materials
Supporting WebLearn materials and student study materials