Coping with the death of someone close to you is emotionally difficult and if that is not hard enough you also then need to deal with their estate. If you don’t know what practical steps you have to take it can make the situation far worse. There are also many legal requirements that need to be attended to and often it seems like there is just too much paperwork for you to be able to cope.
A personal approach which ensures you deal not only with an experienced professional with the necessary legal skills to deal effectively with the administration of the estate but someone who is empathetic to your situation and understands how difficult it can be for you having to deal with the affairs of someone close to you who has died.
We provide a clear indication at the very outset of the time scale to complete the administration of the estate and a clear indication at the very outset of the cost to complete the administration of the estate. For information on the process of administering the estate of someone who has died,please see The Law Society Guide for Probate. (https://www.lawsociety.org.uk/for-the-public/common-legal-issues/probate/)
The Probate Team is made up of talented and dedicated individuals who will look to provide you with the best possible service from both a professional and personal prospective.
Our fee-earning team are STEP members demonstrating a commitment to specialist training and qualifications in this field of work. None of the team conduct work for other departments; we believe that Wills and Probate work is a dedicated area of law that requires specialist knowledge.
In brief the team is as follows:
- Tracy Hatswell TEP Partner
- Emma Hatswell Will Writer – STEP Qualified
- Janice Miller Senior Legal Assistant
- Eleanor Maslen Legal Secretary – Private Client Department
No two estates are ever the same and a number of circumstances will dictate the length of time a matter can take and how complex it will be.
Due to the specific nature of each estate our team offer a number of pricing options depending on whether the work needed can be conducted on a fixed price or on a time basis.
Grants of Probate or Letters of Administration
Wason Male & Wagland LLP offer an Application Only service or a bespoke service dealing with all aspects of Estate Administration including filing of the relevant tax returns and inheritance tax mitigation through Deeds of Variation. Fixed Fees can be agreed at the outset for most matters and our client feedback repeatedly reports that we are very competitive compared to local firms and significantly less expensive than corporate banks in this regard.
What We Charge:
The examples shown below give a range of our fees dependant on the nature of the estate and our retainer. You will note where VAT is payable this is highlighted and to assist you we have also indicated disbursements which may arise. Disbursements are third party payments due in a transaction that we shall collect from you and pay out to the relevant third parties at the appropriate times. The professional fee will include all work required to conclude your transaction form start to finish.
The fees are an indication of what you could expect. However to understand your matter in more detail and for a full quote please call us on 01707 664 888 (option 115)
We can then take some time to tell you how we work and what makes us different from other firms.
GRANT ONLY APPLICATION
Applying for the grant based on the information provided by the executors:
We offer a fixed fee service:-
Where there is no inheritance tax to pay and the short form inheritance tax form can be completed –
£1,500 plus VAT
Where a long form inheritance tax form is required or inheritance tax is due to be paid –
£3,500 plus VAT
APPLYING FOR THE GRANT, COLLECTING AND DISTRIBUTING THE ASSETS
We anticipate this will take between 10 and 18 hours work at £220 to £250 per hour depending on who conducts the work. Total costs estimated at -£2,200-£4,000 (+VAT).
The exact cost 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, costs will be at the higher end.
We will handle the full process for you. This quote is for estates where:
- There is a valid will
- There is no more than one property
- There are no more than 3 bank or building society accounts
- There are no other intangible assets
- There are 2-4 beneficiaries
- There are no disputes between beneficiaries on division of assets. If disputes arise this is likely to lead to an increase in 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 not included in this fee:
Probate application fee of £155
£7 Swearing of the oath (per executor)
Bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department searches (£2 per beneficiary)
Post in The London Gazette – Protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditors.
Post in a Local Newspaper – This also helps to protect against unexpected claims.
Disbursements are costs related to your 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.
Potential additional costs
If there is no will or the estate consists of any share holdings (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.
If any additional copies of the grant are required, they will cost £0.50 (1 per asset usually).
Dealing with the sale or transfer of any property in the estate is not included.
How long will this take?
On average, estates that fall within this range are dealt with within 6-12 months. Typically, obtaining the grant of probate takes 12-18 weeks. Collecting assets then follows, which can take between 4-12 weeks. Once this has been done, we can distribute the assets, which normally takes 2-4 weeks.
BESPOKE FIXED FEE PROBATE SERVICE
We can help you through this difficult process by dealing with all aspects of the administration of the estate, from obtaining the Grant of Probate on your behalf to the distribution of the residuary estate and the filing not only of the inheritance tax forms but also the trust and estates income and capital gains tax returns.
We will attend to every aspect of the estate administration as well as advise on possible inheritance tax mitigation or potential for future planning.
How much does this service cost?
TOTAL: Fixed Fee of 1% of the gross value of the Estate Assets plus VAT and Disbursements.
As part of our fixed fee we will:
- Provide you with a dedicated and experienced probate solicitor to work on your matter
- Identify the legally appointed executors or administrators and beneficiaries
- Accurately identify the type of Probate application you will require
- Obtain the relevant documents required to make the application
- Complete the Probate Application and the relevant HMRC forms
- Draft a legal oath for you to swear
- Make the application to the Probate Court on your behalf
- Obtain the Probate
- Collect and distribute all assets in the estate
- Attend to the tax returns for the period of administration
- Provide Inheritance Tax mitigation advice where possible
- Draft any Deeds of Variation and attend to the transfer of property and shares where required
On average, estates that fall within this range are dealt with within 12-18 months. Typically, obtaining the grant of probate takes 6 months. Collecting assets then follows, which can take between 4-8 weeks. Once this has been done, we can distribute the assets, which normally takes 4-8 weeks.