Probate can be a difficult proesss. Let us help you put the affairs in order.
Please get in contact with us if you need help or assistance with any of the following:
Lasting Powers of Attorney
Inheritance tax advice
Letter of Wishes
Severance of Joint Tenancies
Appointment of special executors for businesses
Statutory Declarations of solvency
What is Probate?
Probate, also known as a Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration, is the term used to describe the process of obtaining authority from the Court to allow a person or persons named in a Will, or as next of kin if no Will is available, to act in the financial and legal affairs of the person who has died.
It is an important process and the Grant of Probate is an important document. It involves dealing with the deceased's assets and providing to the Court and HMRC a breakdown of their liabilities and assets. It also requires the payment of inheritance tax. Once obtained, the Grant of Probate allows the executor or administrator to distribute the estate in accordance with the Will, or the rules of intestacy if no Will is located.
Do you need Probate?
Probate is not always required. It will depend on the nature of the assets held by the deceased and the limits imposed by banks or building societies on the release of funds. If a deceased owned property in England and Wales, it is likely that a Grant of Probate will be required.
Why use a solicitor?
We are conscious that dealing with Probate can be challenging for clients during such an emotional time and, although it is possible for clients to apply for Probate themselves, completing the Probate forms and making the application to Court can take considerable time and effort. There are also other factors to consider such as inheritance tax and whether the deceased person’s estate is below or over the inheritance tax threshold.
We, at Carreg Law, are here to assist you and can offer compassionate support during this difficult time. We will also try and ensure any inheritance tax paid is minimised.
Meinir and Carys have 20 years’ worth of experience between them as probate solicitors.
Solicitors are experienced professionals who are trained to deal with complex legal documents and circumstances but also, a good solicitor, should also be trained and be able to deal with the emotional circumstances that arise. They offer a personal service. This is important and particularly so when it comes to emotional situations. In comparison, the mass market banks, charities and supermarket ‘legal service’ offerings do not provide the quality, personal or experienced approach. They tend to use non-qualified staff with modern software solutions and call centres. This is not a personal or high-quality service and, from our experience, are often more expensive than a solicitor.
Solicitors are entirely independent. We do not have connections with banks, funeral companies, building societies, charities, supermarkets or pension companies. We must operate independently and ensure that you get the correct advice and support.
If, in the rare event we make a mistake, we have insurance to compensate you and a regulatory body (the Solicitors Regulation Authority) to complain to. This is important. Non-solicitor companies are not always regulated and don't have to have the insurance we have in place.
How much will it cost?
Probate is a complex process, hence the need in our view, to instruct a professional person in the form of a solicitor.
Fees for probate vary depending on the following factors:
1. Size/Value of the estate
2. Whether inheritance tax is payable
3. Whether the estate includes any property
4. The number of beneficiaries
We charge an hourly rate of £200 plus VAT for the work and provide an estimate of the number of hours we anticipate the probate will take us at the initial interview.
We do not charge a percentage of the estate as some firms will do.
There is a Court fee to apply for the Probate of £155. Each sealed copy of the Probate costs 50p and we normally advise getting at least 4 copies.