There are lots of frequently asked questions about probate, but perhaps the most common relates to the actual cost of probate.
The answer ultimately depends upon who you instruct to get help with the probate. Essentially, the three most common providers are banks, will writers or Solicitors.
Having helped hundreds of clients with probate, here are a few important points to consider.
The Bank Has Sent Someone To My House To Discuss Probate
Sadly we hear of many cases in which a bank’s supplier of probate services has sent a representative to visit the executor or next of kin at home. In our experience, people need time to choose a provider they are comfortable with, who will provide a fair service, at a reasonable cost. Instead, we find that such providers often pressure executors, who are often very vulnerable given the recent death of a loved one. As a result of this, our firm advice is to avoid such providers who will often charge very high fees or even a percentage of the estate.
We also give every client time to think about our services and the cost.
Avoid Being Charged As a Percentage of the Estate or an Hourly rate
We do not believe being charged as a percentage of the estate is fair. As odd as it sounds the estate value sometimes doesn’t necessarily mean more work. take for example, the case were the deceased left £100,000 in two bank accounts – if charged 2% then then costs would be £2,000, by contrast if the deceased had £300,000 within 2 accounts the costs if charged at 2% would be £6,000. Nearly 3 times more, and yet the work involved would be exactly the same.
The value of the estate can make a difference to the work involved in the following cases:-
- when the estate exceeds £325,000 and inheritance tax is payable
- when there are a large number of assets eg. shares that have to be collected
- when the estate has inheritance tax, a large number of assets and liabilities and beneficiaries
In addition, avoid hourly rates – they do not create efficiency and in our experience can often promote inefficiency !
Do I Need Help With Probate ?
Whether to get help is an important decision, and our in our experience the key benefits of getting help from a lawyer are :-
- time – even the most straightforward estates take time to complete
- expertise – knowing that everything is done right is important
- insurance – a lawyer will be insured if things go wrong
- speed – a lawyer will in our experience obtain probate quicker
- efficiency – a probate lawyer will know the process inside out
When To Use a Probate Solicitor
Knowing when to use a solicitor ( or know when help is needed ) is important. We typically find that clients get help in the following cases :-
- When inheritance tax is payable on estates over £325,000
- When clients need help claiming Inheritance Tax Reliefs
- When the Deceased was unknown to the Executor or Administrator or Family member
- When the Deceased died Intestate without a will and was a distant relative
- When there are issues over the will itself and its meaning
- When the will is likely to be disputed
- The original is lost
- when the probate registry has raised an issue relating to the will
- The Deceased had assets in different countries
- When there are a large number of beneficiaries
- when the estate has complicated assets eg, business assets, agricultural etc
Ensure you get a simple fixed fee quote
If you would like some help, the best thing to do is to get a fixed fee quote – its how we have always acted and we believe this to be much more easy and straightforward way of charging – you know at the very beginning of the case the exact cost.
What experience does TM Solicitors have ?
We specialise in probate and as such all our processes are aimed at providing a specialist probate service at an affordable cost. We always charge a fixed fee.
You can review independent testimonials by clicking here and we are proud of our google 5 rating.
TM solicitors are national probate specialists that help clients across the UK obtain probate on a fixed fee – if you would like help with probate call us now on 01482 429985 and ask to speak with Tim Murden alternatively you can e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org