In accordance with SRA Transparency Guidance 2018, please find below our approach to fees and service for the delivery of our Probate Services.
Pricing for Probate Services
Every probate is different. However, with our extensive experience we are able to offer the following indicative cost bands based on the gross value of the estate.
The gross value can be roughly calculated using the value of all the known assets including a house.
We offer the following fees for estates with all of the following:
- A valid will
- No disputes between beneficiaries on the division of assets and no claims made against the estate
- No more than one property
- No more than 4 bank or building society accounts
- No intangible assets
- No shareholdings
- Between 1 – 4 beneficiaries
- No overseas assets
- No trusts
- There is no inheritance tax payable and the executors do not need to submit a full account to HMRC.
Where there are estates with assets in excess of those listed above, we will be able to provide a tailored price range based on between 2% and 4% of the gross value of the estate.
All fee structures are based on an hourly rate which is between £135 and £405 per hour (plus 20% VAT). The range of hourly rates reflects the seniority of the person undertaking the work and the urgency involved.
Any estates with no valid will, or any form of contention, or with assets outside of the UK, will be quoted on a case by case basis using an hourly rate. Please contact us directly to discuss your particular needs.
Disbursements are expenses that are payable to third parties. We handle to payment of disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.
All disbursements are in addition to the above charges.
The disbursements we usually anticipate are detailed below. This is not an exhaustive list and other disbursements may apply depending on the probate process.
- Probate application fee (£273 in February 2023).
- Bankruptcy search advertisement – only Land Charges Department searches (£2.40 per beneficiary).
- Anti-Money Laundering searches – checks on sanctions, PEPs, address, ID and similar (roughly £5 per individual based in UK, and around £16 for individuals who are overseas).
- Post notices in publications – this also helps to protect against unexpected claims. The cost is around £260.
What do our charges include and what are the key stages?
Our fees cover all the work required to complete a probate. This includes:
- Providing 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 an executor’s oath for you to swear
- Make the application to the Probate Court on your behalf
- Collect and distribute the assets in the estate, including provision of full estate accounts providing an account summary of the estate administration for record and tax purposes.
In addition, we do not charge extra should you chose to appoint Barr Ellison LLP as executors or trustees.
We are dependent on information received from the third parties, we can only work as fast as the information is given to us.
How long is my transaction likely to take?
Matters usually take between 6 and 12 months for a straightforward estate. For more complex estates, the time frame is likely to be 12 to 18 months. However, it can take longer if there are complexities, particularly those which depend on the actions of 3rd parties (e.g. a property sale) or other external factors beyond our control.
What else will I need to consider
There are additional things you will need to consider which may incur costs that will need to be paid in addition to the fees and disbursements detailed above:
- Inheritance tax payments
- Income tax and capital gains tax payments to the date of death and for the administration period
- If there is no will or the estate consists of overseas assets, or there is some form of dispute within the beneficiaries or claim within the estate there are 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 50p (1 per asset usually)
- Dealing with the sale or transfer of any residential property in the estate is not included in the above fees.
What happens if I change my mind and don’t want to go through with the transaction anymore?
Should you wish to terminate the transaction at any time, you will be liable for any costs and disbursements incurred to date, and will be billed for them.
Who is going to do this work for me and what is their experience?
The work will be carried out by one or more of our lawyers in the Personal Wealth Team. The Team’s Supervising Partner is Emma Parsons. Follow the links to view their experience.