At Wellers we have a very capable team of private client lawyers who provide probate and estate administration services of the highest quality. Our service is a very personal one which requires an in-depth understanding of each case and the continuity of having one lawyer oversee it from beginning to end.

The process requires considerable experience and diligence, as there are many aspects which may initially appear straightforward, but subsequently prove to be time consuming and complex to unravel. That is one of the reasons why solicitors often quote a basic price plus an option to charge an hourly rate to cover the additional behind the scenes work.

A small complex estate involving overseas investments and shares may well cost more to administer than a high value estate where savings and investments are more mainstream. Disputes about the Will and ownership of assets will also increase timescales and often require legal work to resolve.

Probate and estate administration fees

Where we deal with the whole process for you for example applying for the grant, collecting and distributing the assets our prices are from 2% to 4% of the gross estate plus VAT and disbursements. Experience has shown that we normally end up charging towards the lower end of this range.

Our percentage estimate includes an hourly charge element and a responsibility charge based on the value of the estate namely 0.5% on land and property and 1% on all other assets where the executors are lay people.

Included as part of our service we will:

  • Provide you with a dedicated and experienced probate lawyer to work on your matter
  • Identify the legally appointed executors or administrators and beneficiaries
  • Accurately identify the type of Probate application you will require
  • Obtain the relevant documents required to make the 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
  • Obtain the Probate and securely send two copies to you
  • Collect and distribute all assets in the estate

This quote is for estates where:

  • There is a valid will
  • There is no more than one property
  • There are no more than 5 bank or building society accounts
  • There are no other intangible assets
  • There are 1-5 beneficiaries
  • 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
  • No claim for transferable nil rate band.

We provide Grant Extraction only service for a fee of £1,500 plus VAT and disbursements. All date of death values must be supplied together by client in the form of an assets and liabilities schedule.

We anticipate this will take between 4 and 6 hours work for the grant extraction only and between 10 and 30 hours work at £250 to £350 per hour plus VAT for a complete service.

There is a range of hourly costs for legal work dependant on the level and experience of our probate lawyers as follows:

Heads of Department and Senior Solicitors £265 to £450.

Solicitors £225 to £265

Consultants £240 to £290

Legal Executives £250 to £275

Senior Probate Executive £250

Probate Executives £235

Paralegals and Trainees £110 to £200

The exact cost will depend on the individual circumstances of the matter. For example, if there is one beneficiary and no property and an estate requiring the simpler tax return, costs will be at the lower end of our 2-4% range. If there are multiple beneficiaries, numerous properties and multiple bank accounts, or complex investments and large shareholdings, trusts and a taxable estate, claims for transferable nil rate band, residence nil rate band or transferable residence nil rate band costs will be at the higher end of the 2-4% range.

Disbursements

Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of the 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 to be 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.

We have provided a full set of essential disbursements and potential disbursements relating to property and other special disbursements within our Probate and estate administration brochure. Please click here to view.

How long will this take?

On average, estates that fall within this range are dealt with within 3-6 months for simpler estates where the simpler tax return is to be completed and 6-12 months for taxable or more complex estates. Typically, obtaining the grant of probate takes 9-12 weeks for the simpler tax returns estates and 12 – 24 weeks for taxable estates. Collecting assets then follows, which can take between 4-6 weeks for cash assets. Once this has been done, we can distribute the assets, which normally takes 1-4 weeks.

For a detailed guide to timescales please see our Probate and estate administration brochure

Full Service Probate

We can help you through this difficult process by obtaining the Grant of Probate on your behalf. We will also undertake the collecting and distributing of assets.

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

Our team

We have private client solicitors in each of our offices, able to provide a full Probate and estate administration service.

If you contact our Surrey offices, your case will be managed by Richard Bones or Deena Iqbal. Richard qualified in 2002 and Deena in 2009. Both are Private Client solicitors who regularly take on probate and estate administration work. The quality of their work is supervised by Ingrid McCleave who qualified as a barrister in 1995 and has a high level of expertise in trust and tax law.

Ingrid oversees the work of the Private Client teams which in Bromley includes Paul Reed and Nicole Cheel-Jennings who are both Probate Executives (ACILEx). Paul has over ten years’ experience with Wellers and brings a wealth of knowledge to his clients.

In Sevenoaks Sally Andrews manages Probate and estate administration cases. Sally qualified in 2011 and regularly takes on this type of work.

In our central London office the Probate and estate administration is managed by Sangeeta Rabadia who qualified in 2012 and is a full member of the Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners (STEP).

Please contact our Surrey office on 01372 750100, Sevenoaks on 01732 457575, Bromley on 020 8464 4242 and London on 020 7481 2422 or email enquiries@wellerslawgroup.com for more information.