We offer two probate services.  We can obtain the grant of probate, prepare the inheritance tax return and legal statement or we can take responsibility for the whole administration of the estate.

The cost of our services depends on the level of responsibility which the personal representatives wish us to have.

Our probate team has over 40 years of collective experience in delivering high quality work in all matters relating to Wills and Estate Administration

We have four members of the team who may work on your matter.  Regardless of who works on your matter, they will be supervised by Helen Stewart, Partner and Head of the Private Client department

Probate only service

If the executors would prefer us to only obtain a grant of representation (and the firm are not executors), then there will be a fixed cost for this service.

The executors would have to notify all of the deceased person’s banks, other financial institutions and creditors of the of the person’s death and obtain from them details of all sums of money due to, and from, the person’s estate.  They would supply those details and any property valuations to us.

We would then prepare the inheritance tax return and legal statement for the executors.  If necessary, the inheritance tax return would be submitted to HMRC and any necessary forms would be submitted to the persons banks requesting that any inheritance tax is paid direct to HMRC.

When HMRC provides their certificate to show that the inheritance tax has been paid, we would apply to the Probate Registry for a grant of representation.

When the grant is issued, we would send it to the executors and from this point on they would deal with the administration of the estate.

It may be necessary for the executor to open up an executor’s bank account for the person’s money to be paid into, out of which they could settle all liabilities before paying what is left to the beneficiaries.

Because of current delays at the probate registry, it is impossible to predict how long the obtaining of the probate would take.  The probate registry do not currently allow applications to be chased until 8 weeks after submission.

See our fees tab for more information on prices.

Full Estate Administration Service

If the executors would like this firm to take responsibility for all of the administration of the person’s estate, or if the firm of solicitors are appointed as executors under the person’s will, then we provide an all-round service from start to finish.

The family’s only involvement will be to supply initial information about the person’s assets and liabilities, as well as the death certificate (unless we have registered the death).  If family members or others are also the personal representatives, they will be sent paperwork prepared by us to sign as and when required.

If the firm are appointed as executors, we may even be involved in arranging the funeral.

We would carry out all the necessary liaising with the person’s banks and other financial institutions to ascertain how much money was held in accounts at the date of death.  If necessary, we would arrange for any house, flat or other property to be valued.

We would liaise with the funeral directors in respect of their invoice and, where possible, arrange for it to be paid out of the person’s account even before probate is granted.

We would also contact any creditors to establish how much money was owed at the date the person died.  For example, home utility suppliers (such as gas, electric, water etc), care costs, any mortgage lender or other lender etc – and ensure that they are made aware of the need to wait until funds are available from the person’s estate before payment can be made.

Having obtained the above information, we would then prepare the inheritance tax account and legal statement for the executors, both of which have to be signed by the executors.

We would arrange for any inheritance tax to be paid where possible out of the person’s accounts and apply to the probate registry for a grant of representation.

When the grant is issued, we would distribute sealed copies to all institutions which held the person’s money, together with any additional forms that they require.  This would then enable the institutions to release the person’s money to our account from which we would the settle any liabilities.

We would also deal with the person’s income tax affairs.

Once everything has been dealt with, we would produce a set of estate accounts for approval and distribute the estate to the beneficiaries in accordance with the will or law of intestacy if there is no will.

Once we have established how much work is likely to be involved, we will be able to provide an estimate of the overall cost.

The length of time it will take to administer the estate depends on the complexity of the matter.

See our fees tab for more information on prices.