Our approach to probate fees
No estate is exactly the same, and our fees will reflect the complexity of the deceased’s affairs. For example, estates comprising simple assets with few beneficiaries will cost less to administer than estates comprising complex or business assets, multiple heirs and those establishing will trusts for multiple beneficiaries. Because of this it is not practicable for us to provide a figure for the total cost of us helping you until we have details of the estate to be administered.
No matter how complex an estate is, our probate lawyers will explain the situation clearly. We will make complicated arrangements appear much simpler.
Our fees for estate administration start from £2,500 plus VAT for the most simple administration and are charged based on our time rather than the value of the estate. Fees for the most complex estates may exceed £8,000 plus VAT, but this is rare except for those with an international element, complex tax issues or establishing Will trusts. Once we have discussed the assets and devolution of the estate with you, we will provide you with a written estimate and description of the services we will need to provide to ensure the timely and complete administration of the estate.
Due to the broad range of services and, therefore, the degree of experience needed to administer any one estate, it is not practicable for us to state a precise rate at which our time will be charged. Our hourly rates currently range from £125 plus VAT per hour to £500 plus VAT per hour.
Our standard services include:
- A review of will and the deceased’s family connections to advise you on the proper distribution of the estate;
- Liaising with banks, asset managers, accountants, valuers and third parties to ascertain the value of the estate’s assets and liabilities;
- Calculating any inheritance tax due on the estate and exemptions and reliefs that may reduce this;
- Preparing and submitting the application to the Probate Registry;
- Gathering in the estate assets and paying outstanding liabilities;
- Organising the submission of lifetime and estate tax returns;
- Preparing estate accounts (with accountants where necessary);
- Paying legacies and distributing the remaining assets in accordance with the deceased’s wishes; and
- Forming any trusts established under the Will.
Typical disbursements for simple estates will include:
- £155 – Probate application fee
- £7 – Swearing of the oath
- £200 (approx.) – Post in The London Gazette and a local newspaper – This helps to protect against unknown creditors.
- £3 – Land Registry title copy – per property
- £20-125 – Land Registry fee for transferring properties to beneficiaries
- Valuation fees – depending on the value and nature of any property
- Licence fees – may be charged by Freehold landlords for the transfer of apartments and flats
All of the disbursement costs listed are inclusive of VAT.
Inheritance tax may also be payable. Our service includes advice on inheritance tax, and we will calculate any tax and interest that may be due.
Details of the lawyers who undertake and supervise this work can be found here.
Even though we have set out our indicative fees in this guide, we would encourage you always to contact us by phone on +44 (0) 0345 459 0007 or by email email@example.com or via our website to discuss your Requirements, objectives and identify the nature and level of legal expertise that you require. We can then provide you with an instant tailored cost estimate and detailed explanation of what is and is not included within the estimate.
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