Administration (Lat. administrare, to serve), the performance or management of affairs, a term specifically used in law for the administration or disposal of the estate of a deceased person(see Will OR Testament) .
Another sense is the administration (administering or tendering) of the sacraments, justice, oaths, medicines, etc.
Letter of Administration.—Upon the death of a person intestate or leaving a will to which no executors are appointed, or when the executors appointed by the will cannot or will not act, the Probate Division of the High Court is obliged to appoint an administrator who performs the duties of an executor. This is done by the court granting letters of administration to the person entitled. Grants of administration may be either general or limited. A general grant is made where the deceased has died intestate. The order in which general grants of letters will be made by the court is as follows:
- The husband, or widow, as the case may be;
- the next of kin;
- the crown;
- a creditor;
- a stranger.
Administration cum testamento annexo, where the deceased has left a will but has appointed no executor to it, or the executor appointed has died or refuses to act. In this case the court will make the grant to the person (usually the residuary legatee) with the largest beneficial interest in the estate.
Administration de bonis non administratis: this occurs in two cases—(a) where the executor dies intestate after probate without having completely administered the estate; (b) where an administrator dies. In the first case the principle of administration cum testamento is followed, in the second that of general grants in the selection of the person to whom letters are granted.
Administration durante minore aetate, when the executor or the person entitled to the general grant is under age.
Administration durante absentia, when the executor or administrator is out of the jurisdiction for more than a year.
Administration pendente lite, where there is a dispute as to the person entitled to probate or a general grant of letters the court appoints an administrator till the question has been decided.
Original text from the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica. Please update as needed.