The Probate Office is an office of the High Court and management of the courts is the responsibility of the Courts Service which is independent in exercising its functions under the Courts Service Act 1998.
However, in order to be of assistance to the Deputy, I have had enquiries made and the Courts Service has informed me that the priority project in the probate area for 2020 is to remove the manual Revenue affidavit from the probate process and to replace it with an on line system. This project, which is in partnership with the Revenue Commissioners, will go live on 14th September 2020 and will reduce the waiting times for all applications.
The proposed e-Probate project remains on the Courts Service's list of modernisation projects to deliver a more citizen-centred service. The timetable for its implementation has yet to be determined and it will continue to be considered in the context of other priority projects in the areas of civil, criminal and family law.
The review of the probate process is now complete. All actions which assisted in reducing the waiting times have been taken. The reduction in waiting times for solicitor applications reflects the outcome of the review and the outcomes from other initiatives that have taken place over the past two years.