Dealing with Probate? Act now before fees increase

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A committee of MPs has voted to approve government probate reform proposals that will see court probate charges surge from a £215 fixed rate to as much as £6,000.

The current fixed rate charge for probate is £215, or £155 for those applying through a solicitor.

From April 2019 all estates worth over £50,000 will be charged a higher probate fee, which for the largest estates is up to £5785 more than the current fees.

Amanda Coates, experienced Wills and Probate solicitor at Farnworth Rose commented:

“Politically and in the media this has largely gone under the radar due to the level of coverage being given to Brexit, but some families could face significant rises in fees if they don’t act quickly.

“There can be various reasons why executors may not immediately apply for Grant of Probate, but if they are in a position to do so we strongly suggest that anyone dealing with an estate over £50,000 starts the process now to avoid the increase in fees.”

What are the new probate fees?

The new fees to be introduced from April are:

  • Estates worth less than £50,000 will pay nothing, meaning estates worth between £5,000 and £50,000 will save £215 compared to the current system.
  • Estates worth from £50,000 up to £300,000 will pay £250, a rise of £35.
  • Estates worth from £300,000 up to £500,000 will pay £750, a rise of £535.
  • Estates worth from £500,000 up to £1 million will pay £2,500, a rise of £2,285.
  • Estates worth from £1 million up to £1.6 million will pay £4,000, a rise of £3,785.
  • Estates worth from £1.6 million up to £2 million will pay £5,000, a rise of £4,785.
  • Estates worth more than £2 million will pay £6,000, a rise of £5,785.

Amanda continued:

“For anyone who is making or reviewing a Will, putting assets into a Trust can help reduce the value of an estate for inheritance tax purposes and lead to lower charges.

“Those who are concerned about how beneficiaries will pay for probate fees can also leave sufficient funds in a life insurance policy. Provided the policy is written in Trust, it can be accessed immediately after death without the need for probate.”

Book a free consultation with an experienced Wills and Probate solicitor

At Farnworth Rose, we offer a free consultation with an experienced Wills and Probate solicitor to discuss your needs and provide initial advice on how we can help you.

To make the process as easy as possible for you, we also offer Saturday appointments at our Barrowford office.

To talk to one of our specialist solicitors today, call us on 01282 695 400.

Or, if you’d prefer to arrange a call back with a member of our team, you can complete our quick online contact form here.