Probate – costs information – inheritance tax payable

Applying for the grant, collecting and distributing the assets – where inheritance tax is payable

We anticipate this will take between 10 and 20 hours of work which is charged at £220.00 per hour. Total costs are estimated at between £2,220.00 – £4,440.00 (plus VAT @ 20%).

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 endeavour to provide an estimate based on our initial meeting and confirm this when we have all of the details of the estate (how many assets, liabilities and beneficiaries there are).

Our hourly charging rates range from £160.00 to £220.00.

We will handle the full process of administering the estate for you. This quote is valid for estates where:

  • there is a valid Will;
  • there is no more than one property (a separate quote would be provided for dealing with the sale of a property on your behalf);
  • there are no more than 5 bank or building society accounts;
  • there are no other intangible assets;
  • there are no more than 3 beneficiaries;
  • there are no disputes between beneficiaries on division of assets. If disputes arise this is likely to lead to an increase in costs and will be agreed with you;
  • 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.
  • all assets are situated in the UK

Disbursements in addition to our costs are:

  • probate application fee of £155.00 + 50p per Court Sealed copy of the Grant (usually one per asset);
  • bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department searches (£2.00 per beneficiary);
  • Trustee Act Notice posted in the London Gazette and a local newspaper — protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditors approximately £165.00 – £250.00 (inc VAT @ 20%);

Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

Potential additional costs:

  • if there is no Will or the estate consists of any share holdings (stocks and bonds) there is likely to be additional costs that could range significantly depending on the estate and how it is dealt with. We can give you a more accurate quote once we have more information;
  • 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 8 – 15 months. Typically, obtaining the grant of probate takes 20 – 26 weeks. Collecting assets then follows, which can take 4 – 8 weeks. Once this has been done, we can distribute the assets, which normally takes 6 – 10 weeks.

Please note some third parties may not be able to provide responses to our enquiries within the timescales above. This may delay the conclusion of the estate.

How will I know if inheritance tax is payable?

Inheritance is payable on an estate (money, personal belongings, land and property) of a person who has died.

There is usually no inheritance tax payable if:-

  • The value of the individual’s estate does not exceed £325,000.00 or
  • If the value of the estate exceeds £325,000.00 or the value over £325,000.00 is left to a surviving spouse or charity or amateur sports club.
  • If the estate includes a property which is left to children or grandchildren the threshold of the estate before tax is due increases to £450,000.00 (to 06.04.2019 when it will increase to £475,000.00).
  • When (following the death of their spouse) the surviving spouse dies, then provided the second spouse to die inherited all of the estate of the first spouse to die then inheritance tax is not usually payable where the value of the estate does not exceed £900,000.00 (to 06.04.2019 when it will increase to £950,000.00).

We will provide you with an indication of whether inheritance tax is payable at our initial meeting if possible. If for any reason we are not able to do so then we will let you know as soon as we can.  Please note that sometimes additional assets are discovered which may bring the value of an estate over the threshold at which inheritance tax becomes payable.