Do you need help to make an application to the probate registry for a grant of probate or need help with liability for inheritance tax? Or need help dealing with an estate where there is no Will?
Probate services are an area where many people don’t know what is involved or where to start. It can already be such a difficult and stressful time, maybe already the worst time of your life and now you are faced with the task to sorting out a loved one’s estate.
We can guide you and help you apply for the Grant of Probate. We can help you through the process of distributing an estate, accounting for inheritance tax. We can help you prepare an estate account, which you need to do if you are appointed as an executor in the Will.
Probate is the legal process of dealing with the estate of a deceased person. We offer a bespoke service that is professionally tailored to your particular situation and what you need. We also deal with many cases where there is no Will (intestacy). We believe it is important to be transparent with our fees and therefore ensure our clients are provided with estimates of legal fees for each stage of the process. Each estate is different and unexpected matters can arise.
Applying for a Grant of Probate-total estate value up to £325,000
Applying for a Grant of Probate – the legal costs for an uncontested, stand-alone application for probate are £590, VAT 20% £118
Probate Registry fee. £273
Extra copies of the Probate. £1.50
Land Registry fee. £3.00
A “stand alone “application for probate means that we assist you with making the application for probate but do not deal with any aspect of administering the estate such as paying off debts, taxes or making payment to beneficiaries.
“Uncontested “means when there is no challenge to the Will or the estate.
An application for probate will take between 12-16 weeks from the point of submitting the application to the Probate Registry before it is granted. If the Probate Registry or the court have questions about the application or queries evidence or information regarding the Will or any other part of the process, then it will take longer and will depend upon what queries are raised.
The stages of the process of making an application for probate are as follows:
- An initial meeting with us to provide us with evidence of your identification and the original Will.
- Gathering information about the estate. We will ask you to supply information regarding debts and assets and valuations. How long this takes will depend upon the content of the estate and how long it takes for you to provide that information.
- As soon as full information is available it will take us two weeks to prepare the application for Probate. The Executors will need to sign the application and it will be submitted to the Probate Registry and from that point it will take between 12-16 weeks to be determined.
- Once Probate is granted, then our involvement will end unless you ask us to deal with the administration of the estate – see below.
Estate value more than £325,000-Legal costs for uncontested stand alone application.
If the estate is worth more than the inheritance tax threshold (currently £325,000) then it becomes slightly more complex. You are required to complete a tax return (IHT400 and schedules) and it can take more time and more information is required before you can proceed with an application for probate. This may also include payment of inheritance tax. With this kind of estate our fees begin at £1750 plus VAT £350 and disbursements as above-probate fee £273, Land registry fee £3.00 , extra copy of probate £1.50 -total £2377.50 The legal fees for applying for probate can be paid from the estate funds. If you need a professional valuation of a house or shares for example then these disbursements are additional. We can help you make valuation arrangements as part of our service.
When you choose our services we take the weight off your shoulders at a difficult time. We will ask you to supply us with the information about the value of the estate, we will advise you and assist you in ascertaining the value of some of the estate assets and debts by writing to banks or financial institutions, pension providers etc. We will arrange for valuations deal with HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) Inheritance Tax return and the application for probate. We see things through until you have the grant of probate and then you can take whatever steps you need.
Administration of the Estate
We also offer a full service which includes the application for probate and once probate has been granted, assisting you in taking steps to administer the estate. This will include all the work usually involved in making an application for probate and dealing with banks, building societies, pension companies and Government bodies, carrying out the deceased’s wishes in accordance with the Will or applying the rules of intestacy, paying the estate debts and obtaining proper receipts, preparing the estate account and paying legacies and/or residuary gifts to the beneficiaries. Our fees are based on our solicitor’s hourly rate and the estate will only be charged for actual work undertaken. We do not charge a percentage of the value of the estate believing that we should only charge for work undertaken. Our charges for dealing with the full administration of an estate are typically between £2000 and £10,000 plus VAT and disbursements. If the estate involves the sale of a property and distribution amongst many beneficiaries and charities then it is likely to involve more work than an estate which has one beneficiary.
We offer fair and reasonable pricing and are happy to have a consultation with you about what is likely to be involved and how much it will cost before you proceed. The charges for dealing with full administration of the estate are payable from estate funds.
If you prefer not to have the full service but just need some advice on how to deal with the estate. Maybe you need help paying beneficiaries, or need to know the correct order of debt payment, well we are happy to provide advice on the basis of a one off consultation for an agreed fee. It will depend upon the amount of time involved, the number of documents you wish us to review and how much time we spend with you to provide you with the advice you need. We offer this service for you at any stage of the process whether it is starting out or further down the line in carrying out your tasks.
Contact our professional team on 0161 445 0588 or email Cecilia O’Donoghue Solicitor who has many years of experience dealing with probate applications for clients.
Harry Boodhoo solicitors provide a full range of legal services to both private and commercial clients. We offer experienced and effective legal advice delivered to you in a simple, straightforward and cost effective professional manner.