Most of us have heard the term “Probate”, and Probate Services but how many of us know what they mean?
Having a Will is only part of a larger process after you die if you own assets in your sole name. These assets include all property as well as savings and investments usually in excess of approximately £25,000 in value (this varies between banks and other investment institutions).
Obtaining Grant of Probate is the process whereby the Executors of a Will or the Representatives of an estate (if there is no Will) seek permission from a government department (the Probate Registry) to distribute a deceased person’s estate according to a Will or the law (if there is no Will). This ensures that the correct people have the legal power to liquidate and distribute an estate.
Many people assume that this must be undertaken by a solicitor, and pay thousands of pounds for this because most solicitor firms operate with high overhead costs and pass these onto their clients. However, there is no obligation, legal or otherwise, for a solicitor to be involved and there are far more cost effective methods to obtain a Grant of Probate. The benefit then being that beneficiaries of a deceased person’s estate receive a greater inheritance as a result. A further benefit is that although most solicitor firms take many months to complete their work, dealing directly with the Probate Registry means that a straightforward application will usually be completed within only 2 to 3 months. This is important if a property sale is required or beneficiaries wish to receive their inheritance as soon as possible.
If you are not confident in applying for a Grant of Probate directly to the Probate Registry as an Executor or Representative, you can use a Probate Guidance service instead. The one provided by TRF currently costs a flat fee of £615.00 (NO VAT) for simple estates and £815.00 (NO VAT) for complex estates. This includes the Probate Registry fee.
Although you will always maintain full control and responsibility as the Executor or Representative, TRF provides full and comprehensive guidance for procedure and documentation, from start to finish.
The end result is exactly the same as if you had used a solicitor firm, however there will be a greater amount remaining in the estate to distribute, as you will have saved a considerable amount in solicitor fees, and this can be distributed far sooner.
Please see our Probate page for further details.