How to Avoid High Probate Costs
And the difference between fixed-fee, and fees fixed today
Many of us have heard of Probate – the document that legally enables the Executors of your will to access bank accounts, investments and other assets so that they can distribute your estate as set out in your will (once any debts are settled).
But unless you have been through it yourself when a loved one has died, few are aware of the process – and the often steep costs – of obtaining the Grant of Probate. The administration and distribution of even a simple will can turn into a nightmare that goes on for months.
Obtaining Probate can be complicated and time-consuming. It’s understandable that many choose to appoint a professional executor to work alongside any beneficiaries in the administration of their estate (for a full outline of Executor Responsibilities, see our article ‘As an Executor, what should I know?’).
Many banks and solicitors offer a low or no-cost will writing service, which seems like a great deal. The other side of the deal is that they will usually appoint themselves as one of the executors of the will, and take charge of the process of gaining probate.
Banks will often charge between 3-5% of the value of your estate for their administration costs to gain probate.
Solicitors firms usually charge less upfront – 1-1.5% – but will charge hourly costs on top of this for their time, their assistants’ time, the sending of emails, letters, phonecalls, etc. The costs can soon mount up.
And the percentage quoted to you at the time that you make your will may not seem large, but if the value of your estate increases (for example, the value of your house rises), then so will their fees.
Protect fees from inflation
So is there a more cost-effective alternative to that will enable you not only to reduce costs, but to know upfront exactly what those costs will be?
Just Wills and Legal Services offers a fixed-fee probate service – with the fee fixed at today’s rates. The fee will be 1.5-2.5% of the current value of the estate (depending on how complex it is) and there are no hourly costs on top. Your beneficiaries will know in advance (should you wish to tell them) exactly what to expect.
And your loved ones will benefit from expert advice and assistance at one of the most stressful times in their life.
For more information get in touch with us at Just Wills and Legal Services on 01342 477102 to book a free consultation.
This article is for general information only and does not constitute legal advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.
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