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Every estate is different with regards to its complexity and value and as such it is very difficult to provide a precise quotation as to costs. Estate costs can range from £500 plus VAT up to £10,000 plus VAT depending on the value of the estate and the number of banks or building societies or shares involved.

A typical estate will normally consist of the following;

  • There is a valid will
  • There is no more than one property
  • There are no more than four or five bank or building society accounts
  • There are no intangible assets such as patents or copyrights
  • There are no more than four or five beneficiaries
  • There are no disputes between the beneficiaries with regards to the division of assets. If a dispute arises then this is likely to lead to increased costs
  • There is no Inheritance Tax to pay and the executors do not need to submit a full account to HM Revenue & Customs (only a short Tax Return is required to be filed with the Probate Registry)
  • There are no claims against the estate

With an estate of this nature we would anticipate to undertake between 5 and 20 hours work at our hourly rate of £220 per hour plus VAT. In addition to our time spent charges we would agree a value element calculated by reference to the value of the estate of between a half to one percent of the value of the estate. Our fees will normally amount to between 1% and 2% of the value of the estate plus VAT and disbursements.
The exact costs will depend on the individual circumstances of the matter. For example, if there is one beneficiary and no property, costs will be at the lower end of the range compared to an estate with a property, a number of beneficiaries and multiple bank accounts.
In addition to our fees disbursements will be incurred in the administration of an estate. Disbursements are costs relating to your matter that are payable to third parties such as the Probate Registry fee. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

Typical disbursements include;

  1. The Probate application fee of £155 plus an extra 50p per copy Grant of Probate (it is usually worth obtaining at least three or four copies, more if the estate is complex)
  2. Bankruptcy only Land Charges Department searches £2 per person
  3. Lost share certificate indemnity policies (dependant on the value of the shares)
  4. The cost of a Trustee Act Notice in the London Gazette to protect against unexpected claims (the fee will be confirmed at the time)
  5. The cost of a Trustee Act Notice in the local paper to protect against unexpected claims (the fee will be confirmed at the time)

Potential Additional Costs

  • If there is no will or the estate consists of any shareholdings (stocks and bonds) there is likely to be additional costs which 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 and transfer of any property is not included

How long will this take

On average, estates such as those described above, are dealt with within three to six months. The obtaining of a Grant typically takes four to ten weeks. The collecting of the assets then follows which can take between two and four weeks. Once this is done, we can distribute the assets, which normally takes one to two weeks. Estates can however take significantly longer if a full Tax Return needs to be filed, particularly if Inheritance Tax has to be paid.
This information is purely provided as a guide as to the costs of administering an estate. We confirm that because each estate is different, whilst we aim to be as accurate as possible we cannot of course be precise in our estimates and would ask that you contact our offices to arrange a meeting with us to discuss the issue in detail on a no obligation basis.