Probate & Estate administration

At end of life, we provide considerate and expert personal help with the legal aspects of dealing with probate and administration of estates.

Our approach is to respond sensitively to the individual family circumstances, providing help in a timely and proportionate manner.  This may be focussed on specific aspects of the process, such as applying for a Grant of Probate, to a full service including initial help and advice at time of bereavement, collecting in, administering and distributing an estate.

Our Legal Charges

Recognising that when someone dies it is an emotional and stressful time,  our priority is to assist sensitively and professionally with the process of dealing with the person’s estate.   We can help with all or part of the procedure from applying for a grant of probate through to the administration of the estate.   Our guideline charges are:-

  • Applying for a Grant of Probate:  £500 - £1,000 (plus VAT & Disbursements), including:- 
    • an experienced solicitor to be your key contact and work on your matter;
    • identification of executors/administrators and beneficiaries;
    • obtaining all relevant information to apply for probate;
    • completion of probate application and relevant HMRC forms;
    • preparation of legal oath for executors/administrators to swear;
    • submission of application to Probate Registry; and
    • obtaining the Grant of Probate. 
  • Estate Administration thereafter: £500 - £1,500 (plus VAT & Disbursements), including:-
    • registration of Grant with financial institutions such as banks, share registrars, etc;
    • preparation of all account closure forms and other relevant documentation;
    • collecting in the estate assets;
    • transferring accounts or investments to beneficiaries as required;
    • preparation of estate accounts for the approval of the executors and main beneficiaries;
    • distribution of estate assets in accordance with Will (or Intestacy Rules if applicable);
    • provision of key documents to the executors at end of the estate administration.

These above estimates are based on there being:-

  • a valid Will;
  • an estate comprising a single residential property and  a few bank or building society accounts;
  • no other intangible assets;
  • up to 6 beneficiaries;
  • no disputes arising between beneficiaries and/or executors;
  • no Inheritance Tax to pay and HMRC having no need for a full account;
  • no claims arising against the estate;
  • no need for tax returns to be prepared for the deceased.

Our legal charges in a particular matter will depend on the particular circumstances of the estate.  For example, an estate with as surviving spouse and no property to sell or transfer is likely to at the lower end of the above guidelines  Also, conveyancing charges involved in the sale of a property are not included in the guidelines

We are happy to provide individual quotations on request: email or telephone us on 0118 939 3999 and speak with a solicitor on our Probate team.  

When instructed, we will also confirm in writing our estimate and keep you updated during the course of the matter on the work done and our charges.   

In the unlikely event that these may exceed our original estimate (eg. due to unforeseen complications arising during the process), we will inform you as early as possible.

Payments to Third Parties (Disbursements)

The disbursements (which we meet on your behalf as part of the overall process) will depend upon the individual circumstances of the estate, but may include, for example:-

  • Probate Court Fees: currently £158 (to include 6 sealed copies);
  • Swearing of the Oath:  £5-£7 per Executor/Administrator; and
  • if required, London Gazette and Local Newspaper Trustee Act Advertisements £225 - £300 depending upon the local Newspaper (Protects against expected claims from unknown creditors).

Timescale

On average, the administration of estates falling within the above guideline range is concluded within 12-20 weeks. Typically obtaining a grant of probate takes 6-8 weeks and the subsequent administration of the estate another 6 -12 weeks.