The total cost to Administer an Estate is worked out on an hourly rate plus a Responsibility Fee.
The total costs will depend on a number of factors, the complexity of the Estate, the value, the number of beneficiaries, the complexity of the Will or lack of a Will, whether or not trusts are involved.
We also usually charge a “Responsibility Fee” (to reflect the importance of the matter and the responsibility taken on by the firm in acting) of 1% plus VAT of the gross value of the Estate (excluding the deceased’s home where the charge is 0.5% plus VAT).
A simple Estate would assume one or two beneficiaries relatively small value no major tax implications and a straightforward Will and distribution. The costs estimate for this would be approx. £2,250.00 plus VAT.
A more complex and higher value Estate costs estimate would be between £2,500.00 to £80,000.00.
The hourly rate applicable will depend on the practitioner with conduct of your matter. Our current hourly rates for practitioners dealing with Estate Administration matters ranges from £175.00 to £210.00 per hour plus VAT. You will be informed who is dealing with your matter and their level of experience can be found on the people section of our web site
The exact cost of the Estate administration will depend on the individual circumstances of the matter and a costs estimate particular to that Estate will be provided upon instruction.
This estimate is for Estates where:
- There is a valid Will;
- There is no more than one property;
- There are no more than four bank or building society accounts;
- There are no other intangible assets;
- There are no more than four beneficiaries who are over 18 and whose whereabouts are known;
- 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; and
- The Estate is not required to submit a Self-Assessment tax return or pay any Capital Gains Tax.
Disbursements payable in addition to this fee:
- Grant application fee of £155.00 (plus £0.50 pence per additional copy of the Grant required – usually one per asset-holding institution);
- Bankruptcy-only Land Charges Department searches (£2.00 per UK beneficiary; costs vary for overseas beneficiaries);
- Approximately £250.00 Statutory Notices in The London Gazette and a local newspaper – to protect against unexpected claims from unknown creditors; and
- Valuer’s fees for valuing any Estate property are likely to be in the region of £200.00 to £500.00 plus VAT.
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 includes any share holdings (stocks and bonds), there are 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.
- Advice and work in respect of the ongoing administration of any Will trust is not included.
What Work is Involved?
We will handle the full process for you. The full administration of an Estate may include the following:
- Providing you with a dedicated and experienced probate practitioner to work on your matter;
- Identifying the legally appointed executors or administrators and beneficiaries;
- Meeting with the executors or administrators to take full instructions and subsequently to sign necessary paperwork;
- Accurately identifying the type of Grant application you will require (generally a Grant of Probate where there is a valid Will or a Grant of Letters of Administration on an intestacy);
- Obtaining the relevant documents required to make the application;
- Identifying the assets and liabilities of the Estate and corresponding with asset-holding institutions and creditors;
- Preparing the Grant Application and the relevant HMRC forms;
- Drafting a statement of truth for you to sign;
- Applying to the Probate Court on your behalf;
- Obtaining the Grant of Probate or Grant of Letters of Administration and sending a copy to you;
- Collecting all assets in the Estate;
- Preparing Estate Administration Accounts for approval;
- Distributing the Estate assets to the beneficiaries; and
- Accounting to HMRC in respect of administration period income tax.
How Long Will This Take?
On average, Estates that fall within this range are dealt with within six to nine months (although the executors / administrators may decide to wait a full six months from the date of the Grant before distributing the Estate). More complex Estates can take up to 12 to 18 months.
GRANT APPLICATION ONLY
We offer a fixed fee service for applying for the Grant of Probate (where there is a valid Will, the Estate is not subject to inheritance tax and the value of assets and liabilities at the date of death is provided by the Executors) at a cost of £850.00 plus VAT.
Who will deal with my matter?
Please see the Wills, Probate and Estate Management section of our website. Upon instruction you will be allocated a dedicated caseworker whose level of experience will be commensurate with the type of matter. All our staff are highly trained and receive constant updates and training on new areas of law and practice and procedure.