A Guide to Probate Costs

We offer a full probate service. Our fees are calculated by reference to the value of the estate. We charge 1.75% plus VAT (currently at 20%) of the gross value of the estate subject to a minimum fee of £1500 plus VAT at 20%. In addition, disbursements paid as part of the administration will be charged to the estate. These will be confirm to you as the matter progresses, and with consent from you to incur them.

Our Service includes:

  • Provide you with a dedicated and experienced probate solicitor to work on your matter;
  • Identify the legally appointed executors or administrators and beneficiaries based on the information provided to us;
  • Accurately identify the type of Probate application you will require based on the information provided to us;
  • Obtain the relevant documents required to make the application;
  • Complete the Probate Application and the relevant HMRC Inheritance Tax forms;
  • Deal with HMRC in respect of any inheritance tax due on the estate;
  • 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 known assets in the estate.

If there are assets abroad there will be additional fees relating to dealing with those assets charged at our standard hourly rate from £175 – £295 plus VAT charged at 20%.

We will handle the full process for you.

Disbursements include the following estimates:

  • Inheritance Tax at up to 40% of the value of the estate plus any interest on this or fines
  • Probate application fee of £300.00 minimum plus £1.50 for each additional copy of the Grant. There is no VAT payable on these.
  • Bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department searches (£5.00 per beneficiary, no VAT is payable)
  • £150.00 plus VAT (at 20%) estimated for Post in The London Gazette – Protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditors.
  • £150.00 plus VAT (at 20%) Post in a Local Newspaper – This also helps to protect against unexpected claims.
  • £350.00 plus VAT (at 20%) estimated for Will Search
  • £500.00 plus VAT (at 20%) estimated for valuation of contents of the property
  • Land Registry fees (No VAT)
  • Funeral costs and death certificates (No VAT)
  • House clearance costs – case dependent
  • Gas, Electric, Telephone and council tax – case dependent
  • Insurance (IPT will apply)
  • Estate Agents fees plus VAT at 20%
  • Income Tax and Capital Gains Tax plus the costs of filing returns or any fines and interest for the deceased and or the estate
  • Tracing Beneficiaries £60.00 plus VAT (at 20%) per person

Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements as long as the estate has money to reimburse these once the funds have been collected in. We do not cover disbursements such as funeral expenses, inheritance tax and probate fees.

Potential additional costs

  • Dealing with the sale or transfer of any property in the estate is not included.
  • Dealing with contested disputes relating to the estate or claims relating the validity of the Will is not included.

How long will this take?

On average, estates are dealt with within 12-24 months. If the estate includes property, it may take longer if a sale needs to be achieved. If the estate is complex it may take much longer to administer.

Additional information

Inheritance tax is charged at up to 40% (no VAT) on the taxable estate, gifts to charities are free of tax and the estate could potentially have certain allowances available against it. If the deceased was a widowed parent that inherited all of their spouse’s estate then the maximum allowance would be around £1,000,000.00 allowance however if they were unmarried and had no children then the maximum of £325,000.00 allowance would be available. Inheritance tax is charged on the amount of the estate at a maximum of 40%.

In addition to inheritance tax there is interest charged on the tax after six months, and fines if no return is filed within one year of death. If you fail to apply for the transferrable nil rate band allowance of two years of death you will lose the automatic right to benefit from this allowance.

Grant Only Service

We also provide a service limited only to the obtaining of the Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration. We will obtain the grant based upon the information that you provide to us relating to Assets and Liabilities. Once the Grant has been received you will then be responsible for paying liabilities and distributing the Estate.

  1. To obtain a Grant only where there is no inheritance tax payable and no HMRC forms need completing, our fees are £1,100 plus VAT (at 20%) and disbursements (probate fee of £300 plus £1.50 per copy, no VAT.)
  2. To obtain a Grant only where there is no tax payable but an IHT400 needs to be completed with 1-4 schedules, our fees are £1500 plus VAT at 20% and disbursements (Probate fee of £300 (no VAT) plus £1.50 per copy, no VAT).
  3. To obtain a Grant only where there is no tax payable but an IHT400 needs to be completed with more than 4 schedules, our fees are £1850 plus VAT at 20% and disbursements (Probate fee of £300 (no VAT) plus £1.50 per copy, no VAT).
  4. To obtain Grant only where inheritance tax is payable, our fees are £2000 plus VAT at 20% and disbursements (Probate fee of £300 no VAT plus £1.50 per copy, no VAT).

Contested Probate

Any matter that is clearly disputed and argued will fall out of this fixed fee Staged procedure. Please note that any work not covered by the above fixed fees and will be charged at our Hourly rates (currently between £155 and £295 plus VAT (at 20%) depending on level of fee-earner).

Disbursements will be case specific but may include:-

  • Court fees – to be confirmed on instruction case dependant
  • Experts report fees – case type dependent, may or may not be subject to VAT
  • Bailiff and Process Server Fee’s.