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At Coles we understand the frustration in not being able to know what Probate may cost you before instructing providers on an hourly rate, thats why we offer all our main Probate services on a fixed fee so its clear what you will be paying from the start. The loss of a family member or friend can be a distressing time and we want to help add certainty at a time of change. 

We also recognise that as the process for estate administration is simplified, that some Executors or Administrators are willing to undertake some of the role themselves to reduce the role professionals are instructed to assist with. we therefore offer two service levels to assist you in an estate administration. For more inforamtion on our servcie levels please contact our trusted team of professionals. Our pricing structure is set out below:

Grant of Probate / Letters of Administration only.   

£750 plus VAT

On the basis that you provide the asset valauations and information required to complete the forms to obtain Probate.

A simple outline of our work is:

  1. preparation of the probate papers and form IHT205 for HM Revenue and Customs on the infromation provided by you.
  2. submitting the probate application to court; 
  3. sending to you the Grant of Probate / Letters of Administration upon receipt of the same from the Probate Registry.

There will also be a fee of £155 payable to the Probate Registry and 50p per copy of the issued document if required.

If we are required to complete a detailed Inheritance tax form (IHT400) for HMRC due to the complexity of the estate, a additional charge of £550 plus VAT will be applied.

We would normally submit the application for probate within 4 weeks of the provision of the information. 

Any additional work, including Probate Registry affidavits required due to missing original wills or queries over the Wills validity and claims for transferable nil rate bands for IHT purposes are excluded from our standard fee and will advise you of the fixed fee for any additional work that maybe required.

Full Estate Administration    

1.8% of the gross value of the estate reportable to HMRC subject to a minimum fee of £1,500.

Where the firm is appointed Executors, this fee increases to 2%.

For estates in excess of £1m, we will agree a fee with you based upon the complexity to ensure our fees are always fair and reflective of the work to be undertaken.

A broad outline of our work is:

  1. contacting the assets holders and creditors to obtain valuations of all the assets and liabilities as at the date of death;
  2. preparation of the probate papers, including those which need to be submitted to HMRC;
  3. submitting the probate application to court;
  4. collection of all assets in the estate;
  5. payment of all liabilities;
  6. distribution of the assets in the estate to the beneficiaries; and
  7. dealing with the payment of income tax liabilities during the administration of the estate (if appropriate).

There will also be a fee of £155 payable to the Probate Registry and 50p per copy of the issued document if required. An accounts management fee of £90 plus VAT, Trustee Act Notice fee based upon the insertion cost in a local and national paper, typically around £300. 

Our % fee scale is designed to give certainty for standard estates. Additional charges will apply in the following special circumstances on an hourly rate basis of £250 plus VAT per hour in additon to the standard work:

  1. Dealing with foreign assets
  2. Variations to estate for estate planning purposes
  3. Setting up and admnistering trusts created under a Will
  4. Assisting in resolving lifetime income tax returns outstanding.
  5. HMRC enquiries or Probate Registry Affidavit requests
  6. Claims against the estate

Full Estate Administration Timeframe

Due to the varied nature of individuals personal affairs it can be difficult to give a generic timeframe for a typical estate administration but to help provide and indication of likely timescales for a estate administration requiring an IHT205 by HMRC:

Task

Estimate for Task

Total time

Confirmation of the value of the estate as of the date of death

 

4-6 weeks

6 weeks

 

Completion of the Probate application and signature by all Executors

 

4 weeks

10 weeks

 

Issue of the Grant of Probate by the Court

 

3 weeks

13 weeks

 

Registration of the Grant with Asset holders to obtain account closure forms

 

2 weeks

15 weeks

 

Closure of accounts, transfer of assets not being sold, confirmation and settlement of any debts.

 

8 weeks

23 weeks

 

Preparation of Estate accounts and approval by Executors.

 

 

4 weeks

27 weeks

 

Payments out to Beneficiaries

 

 

3 weeks

30 weeks

 

A number of factors can significantly impact on the length of time taken to administer an estate.

Certain stages are dependent on 3rd parties and so we have been cautious with the estimates given although in difficult matters or where complications arise, times can take significantly longer.

Where agricultural land is required to be valued or commercial property, the first phase may take longer dependant on the availability of the surveyor and the delivery of their report once any queries have been dealt with. This can take up to 6 months.