Our services Probate and Administration

 

We offer a “grant only” and a “full administration” service and generally work on the basis of agreed fixed charges based on the size of the estate, the extent and complexity of the work involved, and any complicating features (for example, urgency, unresolved tax issues, questions over the meaning and effect of a Will, missing beneficiaries etc).

In outline:

  • Where a person dies leaving a Will, it is up to the named executor(s) to value their estate, complete the inheritance tax (IHT) form(s), pay any IHT due and obtain the grant of probate of the Will, so that they can administer the estate: collect in the assets, pay debts and any legacies, and transfer any remaining money or assets to the beneficiaries in accordance with the Will.
  • Where there is no Will, it will usually be for one or more of the beneficiaries entitled on intestacy (in strict proper order) to value the estate, complete the IHT form(s), pay any IHT due and apply for the grant of Letters of Administration appointing them “administrators” and conferring authority to administer the estate. An administrator’s role is similar to that of an executor, but their authority derives from the grant of Letters of Administration, rather than a Will, and it is the administator’s responsibility to identify the beneficiaries and distribute the estate in accordance with the intestacy provisions.

While the process may appear straightforward, the responsibility and administrative burden can be great and an executor/administrator may be personally liable for any loss to the estate. We can relieve much of that burden and can advise on the technical, legal, and tax issues which may arise, ensuring that the estate is properly administered.

We are also happy to see if we can help acting executors or administrators with queries arising during the course of an administration, and we can advise on post death variations to a Will or intestacy (which may have possible tax advantages if completed within 2 years of the death).

Note: Although we can transfer land to beneficiaries, we are not conveyancers and do not sell or buy land.