Thank you for looking at our probate services.
Coping with the death of a person can bring a mixture of emotions and the legal side of dealing with a person’s death can often be overwhelming and confusing. Having compassionate, experienced legal advice can make this difficult situation much easier on you and your loved ones.
Whether the deceased person left a Will or whether there is substantial wealth and property involved, the sense of burden can increase. Where a Will is in existence, the Executors will need to apply for the grant of probate, which will give them the legal right to administer the estate. Where there is no Will in existence, or the Will is invalid, or it does not specify who the Executors are, an Administrator will need to be appointed.
We have an experienced team who can assist you with every aspect of the probate process, reducing the administrative burden and advising sensitively on key decisions that need to be made when managing an estate. We are aware that administering an estate comes at a time of grief and high emotion, and that most people do not know the processes and legal requirements involved.
We will give you a clear time frame of how long probate should take and will keep you and any beneficiaries advised throughout.
You will have the confidence that you are our priority, with our aim being that any member of the team is available to speak with you when you need some clarity and certainty at any stage in the process. We feel this provides reassurance and gives you an outlet for any concerns that you may have. Fees are generally paid out of the estate, so in the vast majority of cases, there will not be a need for you to fund the administration.
We are proud to hold the WIQS (Wills & Inheritance Quality Scheme) Accreditation, issued by the Law Society. This involves the firm undergoing a rigorous audit process, which ensures we maintain high levels of client care.
The fees involved in a probate matter can vary and this will depend on the individual circumstances involved.
We offer both fixed fees and an hourly charging rate, whereby you will be charged for each hour of work undertaken.
Range of Costs
Our fees will range between £120 to £225 per hour plus VAT.
We may use two elements when calculating our charges for dealing with an estate, based on the time we spend and the value of the estate.
If a value element is applied (which will depend on the individual circumstances of each estate) it is calculated as, up to 1% of the gross cash value of the estate and 0.5% of the gross value of the deceased’s interest in any private residence when we act for lay executors (not acting in a professional capacity). When we act as executor in the administration of estates this element may be up to 1.5% of the gross cash value of the estate and 0.75% of the gross value of the deceased’s interest in any private residence (where a partner is an executor). The fees will vary and are dependent upon individual circumstances. We can help you through this difficult process by obtaining the Grant of Representation on your behalf. We will also undertake the collecting and distribution of assets on your behalf. The range of fees will depend on issues such as the number of beneficiaries and whether the estate includes any property. Probate fees will also typically increase, depending on whether there are multiple bank accounts, shares and based on the number and value of any property.
We will handle the full process for you and the estimate below is for the straightforward administration of estates where:
- There is a valid Will
- There is no more than one property
- There are no more than ten bank or building society accounts
- There are no other intangible assets
- There are one to three beneficiaries
- There are no disputes between beneficiaries on the division of assets. If disputes arise this will lead to an increase of costs and may need to be referred to our specialist Contentious Probate team. This will incur an additional cost
- There is no inheritance tax payable and the executors do not need to submit a full account to HMRC in form IHT400
- There are no claims made against the estate
Legal Fees for Estate administration
£1500 - £6000
£300 - £1200
£1800 - £7200
Potential additional costs could arise in circumstances such as, by way example being -
- Where any executors have died or refuse to act
- Where any beneficiaries lack capacity or are minors
- Where there are any trusts in the Will
- Where there are any missing beneficiaries
- Where any disputes arise
- Any Income Tax returns are required
We can help you through this difficult process by obtaining the Grant of Representation on your behalf. As part of the service offered for the fixed fee we will:
- Provide you with a dedicated and experienced Probate practitioner to work on your matter
- Identify the legally appointed executors, administrators and beneficiaries
- Accurately identify the type of Probate application you will require
- Obtain relevant documents required to make the application
- Complete the Probate Application and relevant HMRC Forms
- Draft a Legal Oath for you to swear
- Make the application to the Probate Court on your behalf
- Obtain the Probate and securely send two copies to you
Fixed Legal Fees to include the obtaining of the grant where the IHT205 form is required
Occasionally, obtaining a Grant of Representation may not be straightforward, such as dealing with resealing a foreign Grant.
Disbursements (For Both Options)
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as Land Registry fees or court fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.
Office Copies for the Grant of Probate – per copy
Commissioners fees for Swearing Oath
£5 per person plus £2 per person per Will & per codicil
Bankruptcy Search fee (per beneficiary)
£2 per name searched
Post in the Local Newspaper
From £60 - £150
Post in the London Gazette
Any Inheritance Tax payable is in addition to our fees. There are various factors that will affect any Inheritance Tax due on an estate, including the size of the estate and any measures that were put in place by the deceased to limit the Inheritance tax liability of the estate.
We do not believe that it would be sensible to attempt to provide at this stage an estimate of any tax that may be payable, as the calculations can be complex. We would advise you to look on the HMRC Website to calculate an estimate of the Inheritance Tax which may be due.
The calculators can be found at:
In the event that there is no Will or the estate consists of any share holdings (Stocks and Bonds), there is likely to be an additional cost that could range significantly depending on the estate and how it is to be handled. We will discuss this with you in detail and advise of any additional fees.
The cost of selling or transferring a property is not included in this price, if you require this service, please let us know and we will provide you with an estimate in that regard.
Our fees are fixed and include items detailed above, however there may be factors which would typically increase the cost of the fees involved. Where there is likely to be any additional cost, we will make sure you are informed of this at the earliest opportunity and a clear estimate of those extra costs will be provided.
Additional services that will require the assistance of a third party at additional cost include:
- Tax advice
- Valuations for property, savings, investments or other assets
On average, the issue of a Grant of Representation will take between 3 - 6 months, followed by the collection of assets and distribution of the assets which can take on average between 4 -12 months thereafter. This is dependent upon the assets comprised in the estate, as houses can take some while to sell. The range takes into account handling everything from straightforward estate through to more complex estates.
With every transaction, there are key milestones, which may vary according to individual circumstances. They may be as follows:
- Applying for Grant of Probate
- Obtaining Grant of Probate
- Settling Liabilities
- Collecting funds
- Producing Estate accounts
- Distributing funds