Probate and Estate Administration

The exact cost for applying for a Grant of Probate and dealing with the administration of an estate 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, multiple bank accounts, collecting and distributing the assets of the estate will be more complex and the costs will be higher.

In addition to the legal costs there are disbursements. Disbursements are sums payable to third parties such as court fees*. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process, but these are paid from the estate and are not included in our quote.

As an illustration of the likely costs to be incurred, where there is a simple estate we anticipate that this will involve between 10 and 25 hours’ work for a junior lawyer at the rate of £275 to £285 plus VAT.

This is for the estates where:

  • there is a valid Will
  • there is no more than one property (Conveyancing fees are charged separately)
  • there is no more than 2 bank or building society accounts
  • there are 2-3 beneficiaries
  • there are no disputes between beneficiaries on the division of assets (if disputes arise this is likely to 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

*Disbursements typically required are:

  • probate application fee of £273 (plus £1.50 for each additional copy of the Grant required)
  • bankruptcy only land charges department search (£2 per beneficiary)
  • notice posted in the London Gazette and a local newspaper (this cost varies but is approximately £300 and protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditors)

Administration of simple estates would ordinarily be undertaken by a more junior lawyer under the supervision of a partner or senior member of the team. Where the issues involved are more complicated, the application for probate and administration of the estate will be dealt with by a senior lawyer whose hourly rate is between £305 to £315 plus VAT.

There is always potential for costs to increase, particularly where (for example):

  • there is no Will
  • the estate includes shareholdings (stocks and bonds), foreign assets, or trusts
  • there are disputes or disagreements between personal representatives and/or beneficiaries
  • the whereabouts of beneficiaries are unknown; etc

In complex estates, costs could range significantly depending on the estate and how it is to be dealt with. We can give you a more accurate estimate once we have more information.

On average, estates falling within the basic range are dealt with within 9 to 18 months. Typically, obtaining the grant of probate will take 12 to 16 weeks although this is dependent upon the turnaround time of the Probate Registry which can vary depending on their workload. The collection of assets and the discharge of liabilities follows, which can take a number of weeks.  The Executors  can distribute the estate when the administration of the estate has been completed.

If a property is to be sold, the time frame will increase and is dependent on how quickly the property is sold.

We would always encourage clients to make contact with us at an early stage following a bereavement. We have an extremely sympathetic and dedicated team and are happy to meet with you and, where practicable, provide a free, no obligation estimate.

For those who would like a more economical service, we are happy to provide an estimate of the costs for completing the inheritance tax return, and applying for and obtaining a Grant of Representation (Probate or Administration).

Please contact the team on 01329 822333 for a tailored guide as to the likely costs for a particular application for probate and estate administration.



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The Wills and Probate Team

Our Clients Love What We Do

The service was informative, well advised and understanding.
T Warren - Locks Heath