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Probate

When someone dies, we can help with the winding up of an estate by obtaining the Grant of Probate on your behalf. We can also undertake the collecting and distributing of assets and deal with any estate tax, including inheritance tax, income tax and capital gains tax.

How much does this service cost?

  • Grant of Probate only - we offer a fixed fee of either £750 plus VAT (£900) or £1250 plus VAT (£1500) depending on the assets involved and matters such as whether there were any lifetime gifts.  Once the Grant of Probate has been issued we will send the official copies to the Executor to deal with the administration of the estate.

  • Estate administration - this includes: obtaining the Grant, collecting assets, preparing estate accounts and dealing with tax, then final distribution of the estate.  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.  Our fees are based on the value of the estate and are typically up to 1% of the gross value of the assets plus VAT, currently at 20%.

Disbursements:-

 

These 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.  Disbursements can include:-

  • Probate court fee – currently £273

  • Bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department searches (£2 per beneficiary).

  • Post in The London Gazette and in a Local Newspaper – protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditors – usually around £190.

 

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 details of the assets and liabilities of the estate and prepare 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 send the official copies to the Executor for their use.

 

On average, obtaining the Grant of Probate takes 2-3 months, but can be obtained quicker if the assets are straightforward or the Grant is required urgently. 


As part of our estate administration service, we will do all of the above and then proceed with collecting the assets (closing bank accounts and encashing investments, selling shares etc), which can take a further 2-3 months. Once this has been done, we will prepare estate accounts, deal with final tax matters and then distribute the estate in accordance with the terms of the Will.  Usually, the winding up of an estate from start to finish takes around 6-9 months, unless there are complicating factors or challenges to the Will.

Potential additional costs:-

 

  • If there is no Will or the estate consists of any share holdings (stocks and bonds) or if the estate includes any assets outside of the UK, 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.

  • Dealing with the sale or transfer of any property in the estate is not included.

  • Where estates are subject to inheritance tax, the process will take longer and there are more detailed forms to complete for HMRC.  HMRC have their own requirements and time frames in place in terms of the probate process.  We aim to deal with HMRC as efficiently and smoothly as possible and can provide you with more information as to our costs once we have more details.

 

For more information or a quote please contact us on 01208 812415 or email info@macmillans-solicitors.co.uk

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