Our experience in probate and estate administration enables us to provide an all-round service tailored to your specific needs. Whether you choose to deal with certain aspects yourself or instruct us to take care of everything for you, we offer you a choice of three packages:
1. Consultation only
We offer an initial fixed-fee meeting of £220 plus VAT to go through and discuss all of the steps that need to be taken after somebody has died. If the deceased left a will, we will explain the terms to you clearly so you know exactly what to do if you have been appointed as an executor. If there is no will, we will explain the intestacy rules to you so that you understand the position. If the deceased's will was prepared by Garden House Solicitors, we offer this consultation to the executors of the estate free of charge.
2. Grant only (Fixed Fee + VAT plus disbursements)
For a fixed fee and disbursements (as referred to below), we can assist you in completing the necessary documents to obtain the grant of representation. If the estate is taxable it will include paying inheritance tax to HMRC.
Once the grant of representation has been obtained, you as personal representatives can then complete the administration of the estate on your own by collecting in the assets, settling any debts and distributing the monies to the beneficiaries.
The level of the fixed fee will depend on whether a short inheritance tax account (IHT205) or a full account (IHT400) is required; there are several factors that need to be taken into consideration such as the value of the estate and the nature and complexity of the assets. Our fixed fees for obtaining a UK Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration are:
(a) Preparing a short account IHT205 including preparing the Statement of Truth within the range of £950-£3,000 +VAT + disbursements depending on the complexity of the estate.
(b) Preparing a full account IHT400 with supporting Schedules and the Statement of Truth within the range of £1,500-£6,000 +VAT + disbursements depending on the complexity of the estate.
These fees are on the basis that the executor/administrator provides us with full details of all assets and liabilities in the estate and that our involvement is limited to preparing the necessary papers to lead to the Grant of Probate and making the application
Call us today for one of our specialist solicitors to provide you with an estimate of our fixed fee.
3. Full administration service (Hourly rate plus VAT and disbursements)
We also offer a complete service whereby we deal with all aspects of the administration of the estate. This includes everything from registering the death with the relevant financial organisations, completing the inheritance tax account, settling any tax due and obtaining the grant of representation, through to settling all liabilities, distributing funds to the beneficiaries, completing the administration of the estate and preparing detailed estate accounts.
As the level of work involved will depend on numerous factors, such as the complexity of the estate and the extent to which you (as personal representatives) may wish to be involved in certain tasks, our fees are based on our relevant hourly rate which apply during this period.
Our current hourly rates (January 2021) range from £160-£325 + VAT depending on the qualification and experience of the fee earner. Details of our current hourly rates will be included in our Terms of Business, but do ask if you would like further details.
Unlike many firms with estates below £2,000,000 we do not make an additional charge based on a percentage of the value of the estate for estate.
With regard to estates over £2,000,000, we will consider making an additional charge based on a percentage of the estate up to a maximum of 0.5%.
An estimate of the overall fees will always be provided at the outset.
We use the following guidance to provide our estimate of our legal costs for full administration of a ‘simple estate’ which is where the estate has ALL of the following:
· A valid will
· No disputes between the 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 more than 2 shareholdings
· No intangible assets
· Between 1-4 beneficiaries
· No overseas assets
· No trusts
With straight forward estates below £2,000,000 our fees are likely to range between £4,000 and £10,000 plus VAT and disbursements.
Any estate 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.
Whatever option you choose, we will guide you through the process ensure that the deceased person's wishes are carried out with the utmost care.
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.
· Land Registry Search Fees for the Title:- £3
· Probate court fee: £155 (Additional copies of the Grant are available at 50p per copy);
· Bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department Searches: £2 per beneficiary;
· Advertisements of the death to protect the Executors from unexpected claims from unknown creditors circa £200
· Bank charges for large electronic transfers circa £35-£50
The above is a guide only and you will be advised fully on all disbursements that may be payable as the matter progresses.
Feel free to contact the Private Client team on 01992 422128 to arrange an appointment to discuss your next steps.