Probate Pricing

Our commitment to transparent pricing

At Wheelers Solicitors in Newport, Isle of Wight, we make our probate prices as clear as possible from the outset of every matter.  Because every probate matter is individual and highly specific to the circumstances of the person who has passed away we provide a free half hour consultation to discuss your matter, make a plan of action of how to proceed and provide you with an accurate estimate of the time involved to complete the work.

Charging rate

Our standard charging rate for probate work is £190 per hour + VAT.  This is broken down as follows:

  • 1/10 of an hour for letters / emails / telephone calls in
  • 1/20 of an hour for letters / emails out
  • Time spent in  preparation and attendance – priced per minute

Average cost – Probate pricing

We can assist with all aspects of Probate (Estate Administration) including obtaining the valuations of the assets, applying for the Grant of Probate and subsequently collecting in and distributing the estate to the beneficiaries.

In an estimate for a ‘typical’ probate administration for an estate which is not subject to Inheritance Tax and may include a property, some bank and savings accounts, a small shareholding, pension income and ‘typical’ liabilities (i.e. utility bills) our estimate would be in the range of 7 – 10 hours of chargeable time: £1,330 – £1,900 + VAT

We will be able to advise you whether the Estate will be subject to Inheritance Tax and you can find further information on the subject on HMRC”s website.

Disbursements

Disbursements are costs paid to third parties on your behalf.  We handle the payment of those costs in the first instance to help the whole process run more smoothly.  We do not ask for any funds upfront for Probate administration, instead these are repaid when funds become available to the estate

Disbursements – Probate (Estate Administration)

  • Probate application fee: £157 (including 4 copies of the Grant of Probate)
  • Swearing of the oath £7 (per executor) (or £5 per administrator where there is no Will)
  • ID Fees of £6 + VAT (per executor/administrator)
  • Official Copies of the Land Registry Title Information for the property: £3
  • Bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department searches £2 (per beneficiary / legatee)
  • Notices in The London Gazette and Local Newspaper – Protects against unexpected claims from unknown creditor and also helps to protect against unexpected claims: £129.70
  • Fees for replacing lost share certificates.  These vary between share registrar but are typically between: £50 – £80

What our service includes

  • Provide you with a dedicated and experienced Probate lawyer to work on your matter
  • Meet with you to explain the process and to create a plan of action with regard to your matter
  • Identify the legally appointed executors or administrators and beneficiaries
  • Accurately identify the type of Probate application you will require
  • Obtain valuations of the assets and liabilities that form part of the estate
  • Place statutory notices in the London Gazette and Local Paper
  • Notify beneficiaries of their entitlement and discharge your duty to comply with GDPR in relation to personal data you hold and process on their behalf
  • Seek confirmation from HMRC that the deceased’s tax affairs are up-to-date
  • Obtain the relevant documents required to make the Probate application
  • Complete the Probate Application and the relevant HMRC forms
  • Draft a legal oath for you to swear
  • Meet with you to take you through the paperwork and answer any queries that you may have
  • Make the application to the Probate Court on your behalf
  • Obtain the Probate and requisite office copies
  • Prepare closure forms and authorities and collect all assets in the estate
  • Discharge the liabilities (if any) of the estate
  • Undertake bankruptcy searches of all beneficiaries to protect you
  • Pay legacies and deal with specific bequests
  • Prepare final accounts for your approval
  • Discharge the estate’s income tax and capital gains tax liabilities (if any) under the voluntary disclosure process
  • Distribute the estate in accordance with the final accounts
  • Where required, provide the beneficiaries with tax certificates showing any income they have earned on their share of the estate during the administration process

Timescales

On average, estates that fall within this range are dealt with within 2-3 months.  Typically, obtaining the Grant of Probate takes 6-8 weeks. Once this has been done we can collect in the assets and distribute them which takes a further 6-8 weeks.

Timescales can be affected where there is a property to be sold, which will depend on the property market conditions at the time. Shareholdings can take longer to collect in than assets held in banks due to the registration process of the share registrars involved.

If there are any disputes in the family regarding the estate then these can significantly affect the timescales involved.

Fixed-fee Probate

Although many executors prefer us to handle all aspects of the Estate Administration, some people only require us to help with the ‘legal’ aspect of obtaining the Grant of Probate.  In these arrangements the executors will obtain all the financial information required and then collect in the assets and distribute them to the beneficiaries.  This can save significant costs and reduces our probate pricing accordingly.

We can prepare an application to apply for the Grant of Probate if all the financial information is obtained for us by the executors for a fixed fee of £760 + VAT.  Relevant disbursements, from the list above will also be payable (typically the Grant application fee of £157 and £7 swearing fee per executor).

As part of our fixed fee we will

  • Provide you with a dedicated and experienced probate lawyer to work on your matter
  • Meeting with you to provide guidance and help and to explain the process to you
  • Identify the legally appointed executors or administrators and beneficiaries
  • Obtain the relevant documents required to make the Probate application
  • Complete the Probate Application and the relevant HMRC forms
  • Draft a legal oath for you to swear
  • Make the application to the Probate Court on your behalf
  • Send you 4 office copies of the probate and store the original in Deeds storage free of charge

This estimate applies for estates where:

  • There is a valid, professionally prepared Will appointing no more than 4 executors.
  • All named executors (who are alive) will be taking the Grant or at least one is taking the Grant with the others acting under power reserved.
  • There are no disputes between beneficiaries on 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

How long will this take?

On average obtaining Probate for you for estates that fall into this range will take 2 – 4 weeks.

Our Probate Team

probate pricing | Wheelers SolicitorsYour Probate matter will principally be handled by Lewis Wheeler, our Probate Practitioner, under the supervision of Paul Wheeler (Director – Solicitor).  Lewis has run our Probate department for 3 years and is studying to become a Chartered Legal Executive with CILEx.  Lewis has managed over 120 Probate matters since January 2016.  Lewis also writes regularly for the Isle of Wight County Press on matters related to Probate and Will writing.  Lewis is supported by his dedicated legal assistant Poppy Bushell.  You can read more about our staff here.