Probate Fees

Probate Fees

Probate fees and disbursements.

Pricing Guide in relation to uncontested probate where assets are all situated in the UK

When someone dies usually there will be certain formalities that you will need to deal with to administer their estate and make sure their assets pass to the correct beneficiaries. This process is referred to as 'Probate' work.

Many firms and banks carrying out probate work will charge clients on a “value element” basis – which means that they charge a fee based upon a percentage of the value of the deceased's estate. At Neves, we do not believe that this is a fair way to charge for our fees and instead we charge our clients on a time spent basis by our experienced probate solicitors and executives. Each probate matter is different and therefore we provide a cost quote at the start of the matter to give you a good indication of what the final cost will be. We will then update you on the ongoing costs on a regular basis and let you know if the quote needs amending.  In some circumstances, we can also offer a fixed fee service where we are simply obtaining the Grant of Probate for you. In almost all cases the probate costs are paid by the deceased’s estate.

Details of our team are available by clicking on the images at the bottom of the page. Most of our team members are qualified members of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP).

Applying for the grant, collecting and distributing the assets if No Full Inheritance Tax Return Required

Our Charges

For estates where a full Inheritance Tax return is not required and it is an uncontested estate administration, we anticipate the time that we will spend dealing with this for you this will take between 5 and 20 hours of work.

The rates charged by our probate solicitors vary on experience with a Senior Associate Solicitor charging £300 per hour plus VAT and a Probate Executive £190 per hour plus VAT. Our charges are likely therefore to be between £1500 and £6000 plus VAT depending upon the complexity of the matter and which members of our team carry out the work. 

VAT is currently charged at the rate applicable at 20%.

Disbursements

In addition to our charges, certain costs will be payable to third parties, which are called 'disbursements'.  We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process. Examples of the common disbursements payable in connection with obtaining a Grant of Probate are:

  • Probate application fee is £273 plus £1.50 per copy Grant
  • Statutory Notices - £180 - £360 Post in The London Gazette and in a local newspaper – This helps to protect against unexpected claims from unknown creditors
  • UAR (Unclaimed Assets Register) search fee is £25

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 estimate is for estates where:

  • There are no disputes between beneficiaries on division of assets. If disputes arise this will 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

Potential additional costs

  • If there are assets that require specialist valuation, then this will incur additional costs;
  • If there are overseas assets;
  • If the estate involves complex tax issues then specialist tax advice will be required and additional costs will be incurred;
  • If there are Trusts to administer in the Will; and
  • 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, it is taking between 3-4 months to obtain the Grant of Probate, with the Probate Registry currently taking up to 8 weeks to issue the Grant from the application being lodged with them. Collecting assets then follows, which can take between 3-4 weeks, (excluding dealing with the sale of any property). Once this has been done, we can distribute the assets, which normally takes 4-8 weeks. Although in some circumstances we advise (in order to protect the executors against third party claims) that the estate assets are not distributed earlier than 10 months from the date of Grant of Probate.

Applying for the grant, collecting and distributing the assets if a Full Inheritance Tax Return is Required

Our Charges

If a full Inheritance Tax Return is required then our costs will be higher. We anticipate the time we will spend will be between 15 and 30 hours. Our charges (at the rates mentioned above) are likely to be in the region of between £4,500 and £9,000 plus vat depending upon the complexity of the matter and which members of our team carry out the work.

Disbursements

In addition to our charges, certain costs will be payable to third parties, which are called 'disbursements'.  We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process. Examples of the common disbursements payable in connection with obtaining a Grant of Probate are:

  • Probate application fee of between £273 plus £1.50 per copy Grant
  • Statutory Notices - £180 - £360 Post in The London Gazette and in a local newspaper – This helps to protect against unexpected claims from unknown creditors
  • UAR (Unclaimed Assets Register) search fee is £25

For more complex estates additional costs may be incurred, such as valuation fees and specialist tax advice, for estates where a full Inheritance Tax return is required. The exact cost will depend on the individual circumstances of the matter.

We will handle the full process for you. This estimate is for estates where:

  • There are no disputes between beneficiaries on the division of assets. If disputes arise this will lead to an increase in costs
  • There are no claims made against the estate

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
  • Advise you on your duties as an Executor and on all matters which will need to be completed to fully deal with the administration of the estate
  • Obtain details and valuations of all assets and liabilities in the estate
  • Collect in the assets of the estate
  • Settle any debts and liabilities of the estate
  • Prepare estate accounts
  • 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 and securely send two copies to you
  • Collect and distribute all assets in the estate

Potential additional costs

  • If there are assets that require a specialist valuation, then this will incur additional costs;
  • If there are overseas assets;
  • If the estate involves complex tax issues then specialist tax advice will be required and additional costs will be incurred;
  • If there are Trusts to administer in the Will; and
  • 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 6-18 months. 

June 2022

 

 

Members of our Probate Team

Nina Gurra
Senior Associate - Private Client
Maxine Braham
Senior Associate and Head of Private Client Luton
Mark Stevens
Senior Associate - Private Client
Josie Birnie
Associate - Private Client
Amy Kirchin
Trainee Solicitor