There’s always so much to do when someone dies like arranging the funeral, registering the death, dealing with HMRC and completing the Probate process.
Managing all of these things whilst you’re dealing with your loss can be difficult.
Our specialist Probate Solicitors can help you.
With our Full Probate Service, we’ll deal with everything in the Probate process for you, so you don’t have to worry.
Why Do I Need Probate?
You need Probate in England or Wales to legally deal with someone’s money, property and belongings after they die. If the total value of all these things (called their Estate) is less than £5,000 you probably won’t need to apply for a Grant of Probate.
A Grant of Probate gives you the legal authority to deal with someone’s Estate. But, you’ll also need to carry out a lot of administration, legal processes and form filling to administrate the Estate and be in the position to give the beneficiaries their inheritance.
Our Full Probate Service takes all of that work away from you, so you don’t need to worry and one of our Probate Solicitors will complete the Probate process for you.
Why Use a Probate Solicitor?
There are many good reasons to use a Probate Solicitor, but let’s look at the key reasons to use our Full Probate Service:
You'll have a specialist Probate Solicitor to deal with everything Probate related
Your Probate Solicitor will use their specialist knowledge and experience on the Estate. You'll benefit from their help and guidance on how to structure the Estate as tax efficiently as possible
Your Probate application fee is less because you're using a Probate Solicitor
Probate can drag on if you're busy with work or family. Our Full Probate service needs limited input from you
What does our Full Probate Service Include?
- Identifying the legally appointed Executors or Administrators
- Staying in regular contact with Executors or Administrators
- Identifying the beneficiaries
- Getting a copy of the Will, if there is one, and checking it’s valid
- Advising which type of Grant is needed - a Grant of Probate if there’s a Will or a Grant of Letters of Administration if not
- Completing the Grant application form
- Applying for, and getting the Grant of Probate from the Probate Registry
- Arranging adverts required by law into The Gazette and local papers
- Dealing with banks and other financial institutions
- Valuing all assets in the Estate
- Transferring joint assets into a sole name
- Paying any debts and collecting any money owed to the Estate
- Preparing and producing Estate and Distribution accounts, detailing all monies received in and paid out
- Distributing the Estate to the beneficiaries
- Arranging the correct insurance, particularly if the property is empty
- Redirection of post, whilst we administer the Estate
- Arranging for a Conveyancer to complete the legal aspects of the Probate property sale
- Liaising with estate agents about marketing the property
- Completing the Transfer of property to a beneficiary if required
- Completing and submitting the correct Tax forms for Inheritance, Capital Gains and Income Tax to HMRC
- Getting any tax refunds or exemptions due to the estate from HMRC, including any relevant exemptions or transfer of Nil Band Rate to reduce Inheritance Tax
What’s Not included?
There are some additional costs, called disbursements, which you’ll need to factor in. These are:
- Probate Registry Court Fee - £155
- Any additional sealed copies of the Grant, if needed - £1.50 each
- Trustee Act Notice in the London Gazette if required - £95.50
- Trustee Act Notice in a local newspaper if required - £300
- Office copies of the property title from Land Registry - £3
- Office copy plans - £3
- Bankruptcy searches for each beneficiary - £2 per person
- Valuation fees for assets that need valuing
- Conveyancing fees for the sale or transfer of any property in the Estate
- Land Registry Fees if property needs to be registered
How Much Does Probate Cost?
It really does depend on how complicated the Estate is. Our Probate Solicitor fees come in a range of options to suit you. This could include a fixed fee, time and rate or even staged fees, depending on your preference and how much work you want us to do you for.
Fixed Fee Probate Costs
We offer a fixed fee Probate fee where the Estate is made up of:
- A house
- A maximum of 2 bank or building society accounts
- A valid Will
- Maximum of 3 beneficiaries
- No more than 1 pension fund
- No more than 1 life insurance policy
Our Fixed Fee Probate Quote for this Estate would be £4,200 (VAT included).
For more complicated Estate, we’ll give you a bespoke quote to make sure you get the best price to suit the Estate.
We can be flexible in our approach, so just give us a call to talk through your situation.
What’s the Probate Process?
If you choose our Full Probate service, we’ll take care of all of the steps below, apart from Step 1 which you’ll do yourself.
Step 1 – Register the Death
You will need to register the death, which must be done within 5 days in England or Wales to get a death certificate. You’ll need multiple copies, so get these now to save time later.
You can use the Tell Us Once service to let all UK government departments about the death as soon as you’ve registered it.
Step 2 – Value the Estate
We’ll need to understand how much the Estate is worth to know if any inheritance Tax is payable. This includes valuing any property, money, investments and belongings.
Step 3 – Pay any debts and collect any money owed to the Estate
Once we’ve valued the Estate, we’ll pay any final bills and get any refunds due to the Estate.
Step 4 – Apply for the Grant of Probate
We’ll prepare the relevant paperwork and apply to the Probate Registry for the Grant of Probate. We’ll need the original Will – not a photocopy.
Step 5 – Pay Inheritance Tax, if there’s any due
We’ll complete the correct Inheritance Tax form once we’ve confirmed the tax position and calculated the tax due. We’ll make sure this is paid before distributing anything in the Estate.
Step 6 – Distribute the Estate
This is the final part of the process. The beneficiaries will receive what’s been left to them in the Will.
How long does Probate take?
The Probate process usually takes around 9 to 12 months to administer the Estate and get the Grant of Probate.
For free legal advice call our Probate Solicitors
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Simpson Millar Solicitors are a national law firm with over 500 staff and offices in Bristol, Cardiff, Lancaster, Leeds, Liverpool, London and Manchester.