Succession - Forms 21 & 22

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Succession is the transfer of shares from a deceased owner to their descendants and beneficiaries. There are different types of succession depending on various situations so below is an overview and the applications depending on your situation.

Succession where there is no formal administration or no Will

The most common type of succession is where the deceased left no Will and no formal administration has been granted. The deceased may have a will but you may have chosen not to go through the process of getting probate in which case just get it certified and attach to the application.

There is further explanation for Uncontested Succession on this blog and you will need Form 22 for this application.

FORM-22 - Application for Succession without a will
403 kb

Succession where there is a will 

Where an estate has had formal administration granted by the High Court of New Zealand (including probate), you will need Form 21.

If a Will makes provision for Māori land, and leaves that land to specific people, the administrators of the estate can certify this on Form 20.

FORM-21 - Application for Succession with a will
416 kb
FORM-20-Certificate-by-administrator
96 kb

As part of the application, the Maori Land Court will ask you questions about the whakapapa of the deceased. In particular they ask:

  • who were/are their parents
  • who were/are their brothers and sisters
  • who were/are their children
  • who were/are their partner(s)

The Māori Land Court use this information to search and confirm any Māori land in the name of the deceased, and enable them to make a legal determination about who is entitled to those interests.

A succession requires a hearing before a Judge so you, your whānau or your legal representative can confirm the facts of the succession.

Quick checklist of what you should have when applying for succession:

• Application Fee - $60.00
• Completed Form (21 or 22)
• Death Certificate (or other evidence which can include evidence from a previous hearing where death was established)
• Written confirmation to surrender life interests by spouse (where applicable)
• Consents to succession by whāngai (where applicable)
• Name and Shareholder ID Number where possible for Incorporations for succession

You can choose to have the hearing at the Māori Land Court venue closest to where you live.

Succession & creation of a Whanau Trust

Form-23-Application-Whanau-Trust
67 kb
If you choose to create a whānau trust at the same time as succession – there are no additional fees if this is lodged with us at the same time as your succession.  To do this you will need Form 23
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Mt Taranaki
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Comments 2

Pisces on Sunday, 22 January 2023 16:08

How many years does one have to put in an Application for Succession Claim before the claim itself can be made null and void?

How many years does one have to put in an Application for Succession Claim before the claim itself can be made null and void?
Support@MLI on Sunday, 22 January 2023 17:43

To our knowledge there is no limitation to the time that it takes to put in an application for succession. As our people research, more tupuna land is found so further successions are also commonly made after original succession applications have been completed. Some land partitioning and amalgamations also make finding the land difficult if it still sits in the name of original owners so it has in some cases taken between 50-100 years for some successions to be done.

To our knowledge there is no limitation to the time that it takes to put in an application for succession. As our people research, more tupuna land is found so further successions are also commonly made after original succession applications have been completed. Some land partitioning and amalgamations also make finding the land difficult if it still sits in the name of original owners so it has in some cases taken between 50-100 years for some successions to be done.
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