Wills, Trusts and Probate Matters

We understand that talking about your Will, or the affairs of a loved one who has just died, are unsettling. We’ve lots of experience in helping people in these situations, and we are here to listen, advise and help you in a straightforward and sensitive way. We have lots of involvement in dealing with people’s affairs and sorting out complicated family or financial situations. Our Head of Department – Yvonne Carratt – is an Associate member of the Society of Trusts and Estate Practitioners. When it comes to our Will Writing Service, our fixed fee is the fee you pay. There are no nasty surprises and our fee includes the storage of your Will documents in our vaults.
Areas of Expertise
  • Contesting Wills, Will disputes and disputed probate cases.
  • Establishment of Trusts and severance of joint tenancy.
  • Inheritance Act claims – on behalf of spouse or partner of deceased, children of the deceased and people who were “maintained” by the deceased.
  • Later Life Planning – making arrangements to ensure wealth, property and any assets owned are protected.
  • Drafting of Wills and mirrored Wills.
  • Administration of estates.
  • Applications for a Grant of Probate.
  • Applying and/or acting as executor.
  • Estate administration including preparation of papers to apply for Grant of Probate.
  • Advising on trust-creation and administration.
Work Highlights
  • Creation of care home planning trust which protected an estate being absorbed into the payment of care home fees.
  • Represented a family in an international contentious probate case.
Our charges for Probate
  • We charge 2% plus VAT of the gross value of the estate in relation to handling probate on uncontested cases where all the assets are in the UK.
  • To obtain a basic Grant of Probate – our legal fees are £500.00 plus VAT – £600.00 including VAT. Court fees are £155.00 (no VAT). Total fees therefore amount to £755.00 

Disbursements

Disbursements are costs/fees related to your matter that are payable to third parties. We handle the payment of disbursements on your behalf and this ensures a smoother process for you.

  • Probate grant fee of £155
  • Trustee Act section 27 notices c£100 for a notice in the London Gazette and c£220 for a notice in a local newspaper. Section 27 notices help protect against unexpected claims.
  • Probate valuation fee c£150.00 plus VAT. It is advisable to obtain a probate valuation for an estate property

Exclusions and Potential Additional Costs

Our fees are fixed and include items detailed above, however there may be factors which would typically increase the cost of the fees. Where there is likely to be any additional cost, we will make sure you are informed of this at the earliest opportunity and a clear estimate of those extra costs will be provided.

Factors that may lead to an increase in cost include:

  • Dealing with the sale or transfer of any property within an estate is not included in the above-mentioned figures.
  • If any additional copies of the grant are required, they will cost £1.00 per copy.
  • Inheritance tax. See here: https://www.gov.uk/inheritance-tax
  • Sorting through numerous old papers
  • Missing title deeds or share certificates
  • Beneficiaries having to be traced e.g. because their contact details are not known
  • There are trusts in which the deceased had an interest which need to be considered
  • Agricultural or business property
  • Private company shares
  • Foreign assets
  • Specialist assets e.g. private collections
  • Threatened, anticipated or actual litigation or disputes between beneficiaries
  • The renunciation of an executor
  • A Will where the terms are unclear
  • Tax advice
  • Deeds of variation or disclaimer
  • Other unusual or complex situations

Key Milestones and What We Will Do

With every transaction there are key milestones, which may vary according to individual circumstances. Our fee will include these milestones and may be as follows:

  • 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
  • Collect in all assets in the estate and settle the liabilities
  • Finalise the deceased’s income tax affairs for the tax year to the date of death
  • Distributing funds in accordance with the terms of the Will
  • Prepare a detailed account of the estate for the Executors and Residuary Beneficiaries

How long will the process take?

On average estates which fall within this range are dealt with within 3 to 9 months.  Typically, obtaining the grant takes 3 months.  Collecting assets then follows and takes on average 3 to 6 weeks.  Once this has been done, we can finalise the estate and distribute the assets.

The Probate Registry switched to a new computerised system in April 2019 and since its introduction there have been delays in the Registry issuing the grant. It is hoped these difficulties will be rectified by the Probate Registry in early course.

 

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What Our Clients Say…

“ I write now to thank you most sincerely not only for your superb service and your professional expertise but also for your understanding and patience”

“ I write now to thank you most sincerely not only for your superb service and your professional expertise but also for your understanding and patience”

“ I write now to thank you most sincerely not only for your superb service and your professional expertise but also for your understanding and patience”

“Extremely efficient…willing to find out the answers to my questions…personable – excellent!”

“Helpful and straightforward, made making our Wills an easy process.”

“Easy access. Quick appointment. Confidential meeting place. Procedures explained. Kept up-to-date.”
Speak to a specialist…
A picture of Yvonne Carratt

Yvonne Carratt

Director
A picture of Emily Lister

Emily Lister

Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives
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