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Probate Costs and Process

Our charges for the administration of an estate is based on the hourly rate as set out in our Terms and Conditions. The current rates are £230.00 per hour. In addition we will charge a value element on the estate as follows: –

Where we are not acting as Executors:-

Value of gross estate less the value of the deceased’s residence or share of the residence 1%

plus

Value of the residence 0.5%

Where we are acting as sole Executors or jointly with others:-

Value of gross estate less the value of the deceased’s residence or share of the residence 1.5%

plus

Value of the residence 0.75%

On any estate with a gross value in excess of £1 million we will consider the value element and may reduce the percentage charged. We will let you know if we decide to do so although we may not be able to make that decision until the administration is complete

In some cases, where you only require us to obtain a grant of probate and the estate is under the Inheritance Tax threshold we may be able to offer a fixed fee.

Examples of costs are:

Applying for the grant, collecting and distributing the assets

We anticipate this will take between 4 and 6 hours work at £230.00 per hour. Total costs estimated at -£1150.00 (+VAT).

The exact cost will depend on the individual circumstances of the matter. For example, if there is one beneficiary and no property, costs will be at the lower end of the range. If there are multiple beneficiaries, a property and multiple bank accounts, costs will be at the higher end.

We will handle the full process for you. This quote is for estates where:

  • There is a valid will
  • There is no more than one property
  • There are no more than 4 bank or building society accounts
  • There are no other intangible assets
  • There are 1-5 beneficiaries
  • There are no disputes between beneficiaries on division of assets. If disputes arise this is likely to lead to an increase in costs
  • There is no inheritance tax payable and the executors do not need to submit a full account to HMRC
  • There are no claims made against the estate

Disbursements included in this fee:

  • Probate application fee of £155 plus .50p per office copy- but are scheduled to increase from April 2019
  • £5 Swearing of the oath (per executor plus £2.00 per exhibit
  • Bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department searches (£2 per beneficiary)
  • £22.65 + VAT Post in The London Gazette – Protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditors.
  • £70 +VAT approx – Post in a Local Newspaper – This also helps to protect against unexpected claims. The cost will vary according to the newspaper.
  • The solicitor will discuss with you if the London Gazette and local Newspaper Notices are necessary
  • Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

Potential additional costs

  • If there is no will or the estate consists of any share holdings (stocks and bonds) there is likely to be additional costs that could range significantly depending on the estate and how it is to be dealt with. We can give you a more accurate quote once we have more information.
  • If any additional copies of the grant are required, they will cost £X (1 per asset usually).
  • Dealing with the sale or transfer of any property in the estate is not included.

How long will this take?

On average, estates that fall within this range are dealt with within 6-12 months. Typically, obtaining the grant of probate takes 4-6 weeks depending on how quickly we can obtain a valuation of the assets.

Collecting assets then follows, which can take between 4-6 weeks. Once this has been done, we can distribute the assets, which normally takes 4-6 weeks.

If there is inheritance tax to pay – you may find it useful to check HMRC’s website to see if this may apply

https://www.gov.uk/inheritance-tax

We can calculate the Inheritance Tax and complete the necessary forms, depending on the complexity of the estate this will usually take between 2 and 4 Hours

Probate – Fixed Fee

We can help you through this difficult process by obtaining the Grant of Probate on your behalf.

If there is a valid will and the estate falls outside the threshold at which Inheritance Tax is payable I am able to offer you a fixed fee of £900.00 plus VAT of £180.00 and the Probate fees

Disbursements (£ in total):

  • Probate court fee of £155.00 plus .50p per office copy
  • £5 Swearing of the oath (per executor) plus £2.00 per exhibit
  • Bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department searches (£2 per beneficiary).
  • £22.65 + VAT- Post in The London Gazette – Protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditors.
  • £70 = VAT Post in a Local Newspaper – This also helps to protect against unexpected claims.
  • The solicitor will discuss with you if the London Gazette and local Newspaper Notices are necessary.

Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

What we will do

  • We will provide you with required client information and our Terms of Business.
  • We will meet with you face to face and/or speak to you on the telephone up to a maximum of 2 hours.
  • We will receive and reply to your emails and letters up to a maximum of 5
  • We will write to the Probate Registry as appropriate up to a maximum of 5 letters
  • We will prepare
    • Any oaths for you to swear
    • IHT return – where there is no IHT due on the Estate ,/li>
    • Obtain Grant of Probate + certified copies
    • Contact you upon the Grant being issued with the original documents

What we will not do

  • We will not obtain any information or valuations in relation to bank accounts, investments, pensions or property. You can obtain this information by writing to the deceased bank/pension provider/ investment advisor with a copy of the death certificate. You can ask an estate agent for a valuation of the property.
  • We will not collect any in assets whether money or property.
  • We will not distribute any assets whether money or property
  • We will not make prepare or submit any other documents other than those described above. If any additional applications are required for any reasons we will discuss the need and the cost with you.

What we ask you to do

  • We will ask you to provide up to date details of all assets owned by the deceased at the date of death whether money or property. We will ask that you provide account numbers and valuations where appropriate.

In the event that the estate proves to be in excess of the IHT threshold or we are required to obtain valuations of assets then we reserve the right to charge in accordance with our Terms of Business. We will provide you with a costs estimate for doing so as soon as practicable.

As part of our fixed fee we will:

  • Provide you with a dedicated and experienced probate solicitor to work on your matter
  • Identify the legally appointed executors or administrators and beneficiaries
  • Accurately identify the type of Probate application you will require
  • Obtain the relevant documents required to make the application
  • Complete the Probate Application and the 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

On average, estates that fall within this range are dealt with within 2-3 months.

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