Estate administration can be a time consuming and complicated process, at a time when you and your family are coming to terms with your loss.
We can help to avoid the onerous responsibility placed on executors, due to the liability to beneficiaries, creditors and HM Revenue & Customs by completing the full administration of Estate for a fixed fee.
Alternatively our popular Grant only service allows Executors to limit the costs to the Estate by instructing us to complete the necessary forms to obtain the Grant. Once it has been issued you can administer the Estate on your own.
Under the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) Transparency Rules we are required to display price and service information for grant and administration services.
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What is Grant of Probate?
Applying for Probate is the process by which a formal ‘Grant’ is made by the court authorising someone to collect a deceased’s assets, sell them and distribute it to beneficiaries.
When is a Grant of Probate needed?
If the deceased owned land, property or shares in their own name then Probate will be needed.
This is regardless of whether the deceased had a Will or not - which is a popular misconception. Probate is the authority that allows a person’s estate to be collected and distributed according to their Will (if they have one); it is not a substitute.
In terms of current and savings accounts, banks set their own limit above which Probate will be required.
|Bank||Probate Threshold *|
|National Savings & Investments||£15,000|
* these figures are based on their websites at the time of writing
It is worth checking with the individual organisation as to whether or not they require a Grant.
Jointly held bank and savings accounts will typically automatically transfer to the other named holder without the bank requiring a Grant.
Who obtains probate?
If there is a Will those persons named as Executors will obtain probate unless they do not want to. Where there is no Will, relatives are entitled to administer the estate but there is an order of entitlement which reflects the rules of intestacy.
How do I apply for probate?
Applying for Probate involves 5 steps:
- Step 1. Locating last Will
- Step 2. Identifying all of the deceased’s assets which includes cash, property, investments, shares and possessions and all of their liabilities such as outstanding mortgage, loans, unpaid utility bills to determine the value of their Estate
- Step 3. Paying Inheritance Tax to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) if appropriate
- Step 4. Preparing and signing the correct Inheritance Tax form, which is required whether or not there is tax due and Swearing an Oath
- Step 5. Applying to the Probate Registry for the Grant
What happens after I have obtained Probate?
After the Grant has been issued by the Probate Registry, the Estate must be dealt with in accordance with the terms of the Will.
This may involve selling the deceased’s assets, settling their liabilities paying any further Inheritance Tax or Income Tax. The beneficiaries may request a set of accounts detailing all payments out and capital received.
The final stage will involve distributing the cash or assets to the beneficiaries.
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