Probate & Estates
Probate and Estates
The exact cost for dealing with applying for the grant of probate and collecting and distributing the assets of an estate will depend on the individual circumstances of the matter.
For example, if there is one beneficiary and no property, costs will be at the lower end of the range. If there are multiple beneficiaries, a property and multiple bank accounts, the matter will be more complex and the costs will be higher.
In addition to the legal costs, there are disbursements, which are costs relating to the matter that are payable to third parties such as court fees.
We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process but these are ultimately paid from the estate.
As an illustration of the likely costs to be incurred, where there is a simple estate i.e. one beneficiary and no property, we anticipate that this will take between 10 and 15 hours work at the rate of £200.00 per hour. The costs estimated are therefore in the region of £2,000 to £ 3,000 (plus VAT £400-£600).
This is for the estates where:
there is a valid will
there is no more than one property (Conveyancing fees are charged separately)
there are no more than 2 bank or building society accounts
there are 2-3 beneficiaries
there are no disputes between beneficiaries on the division of assets. If disputes arise this is likely to lead to increasing costs
there is no inheritance tax payable and the executors do not need to submit a full account to HMRC
there are no claims made against the estate
Disbursements typically required are:
probate application fee of £155 (plus £0.50 for each additional copy of the Grant required)
£7 swearing of oath (per executor)
notice posted in the London Gazette and a local newspaper. This cost varies but is approximately £260 and protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditors
There is always the potential for the cost to increase particularly where:
there is no will or the estate consists of any shareholdings (stocks and bonds) there is likely to be additional costs that could range significantly depending on the estate and how it is to be dealt with. We can give you a more accurate quote once we have more information.
On average estates falling within the basic range are dealt with within 3 to 6 months. Typically obtaining the grant of probate will take 6 to 12 weeks. Collecting assets then follows, which can take a further 4 and 6 weeks. Once this has been done we can distribute the assets which normally takes 2 to 4 weeks.
If a property is to be sold, the time limits will increase and are dependent on how quickly a buyer can be found and the property sold.
For a tailored guide as to the likely costs to be incurred on a particular application for probate and estate distribution please contact us on 01782 615278
We are happy to provide quotes just to obtain the Grant of Representation (Probate or Administration) and complete the Inheritance Tax return for those who would like a more economical service and who have the confidence to deal with the post Grant administration themselves.