Letters of Administration Law and Legal Definition

Letters of Administration refer to a formal document issued by a probate court appointing a manager of the assets and liabilities of the estate of the deceased in certain situations. Usually individuals through a will determine the distribution of their estate. The will usually specifies an executor who is to carry out the directions. But where the decedent has left no will or the executor named in a will is unable or unwilling to serve, the courts must appoint an administrator. This appointment is made by issuing a short document called letters of administration. Letters of administration serve as evidence of the administrator's authority.