Probate and Estates

Dealing with the loss of a relative is never easy, but our wealth of professional experience here at Cozens-Hardy LLP means that we are well placed to provide the support that you require at such a difficult time.

Our team has over 50 years of combined experience in dealing with the management of estates ranging from the very simple to the very complex and involving elements of business, agricultural and heritage property.

The first bit of advice – and perhaps the most important – is 'don't panic'. Banks, building societies and similar establishments are likely to initially confront you with phrases such as 'Grants of Representation', 'Grants of Probate' or in cases where an individual has not left a Will, 'Letters of Administration’. Our team of Probate practitioners is here to explain in plain English what this all means and to help you to successfully deal with everything.

What exactly is Probate?

If an estate is worth more than a set amount (usually a few thousand pounds), then banks will not release funds to Executors of a Will without a Grant of Probate (if a person left a Will), or a Grant of Letters of Administration (if a person died without having left a Will). A Grant of Probate or Letters of Administration is effectively the Probate Court's empowerment of Executors or family to deal with and collect in a person's estate and distribute the estate accordingly. We specialise in assisting with the application for Grants of Probate and then, if required, dealing with the full administration of a person's estate which can involve the sale of property and personal effects both in the United Kingdom and worldwide.

Dealing with a loved one’s estate can seem an overwhelming task – and applying for probate can be immensely stressful and confusing.

Let us help you during this difficult time.

Probate and estate administration - average costs

This includes the collection and distribution of money, property and other assets belonging to a person following their death, where these are within the UK and the matters are not contested.

Our average fee for this type of work is £7560 + VAT. This figure is an average based on estates finalised over the last 12 months. The actual cost to you will depend on a number of factors which we will discuss with you as soon as we have details of what might be involved in the case you wish us to deal with.   

There are other fees and disbursements we will need to pay to other organisations on your behalf as part of the process, such as Probate Registry fees (approximately £155). Other fees are payable if there is a need to advertise either for creditors or beneficiaries or to conduct a will search. These fees are each likely to range from £99 to £230 plus VAT but are only applicable in some situations.

Our charges are based on the time we spend and a 1% value element on personal assets and a 0.5% charge on property value. Our hourly rates range between £150-£220 plus VAT.

These costs are based on the assumption that the estate is relatively simple, all based in the UK and that there are few, if any, assets that would complicate the process or lengthen our time estimates. Our fees do not include any external costs and charges that we may incur as part of the administration (eg tax, penalties, repayable benefits, fees and charges). If the process involves selling a house or flat and we deal with the conveyancing then that will be charged separately at our normal rates, which can be found here.

We understand the stress and emotion surrounding a recent bereavement. The Executor’s role is onerous and we have produced a leaflet that explains the work involved in administering an estate which we will undertakeClick here to view our leaflet. With a simple estate with no complicated tax issues it can take between 8 to 12 weeks to obtain probate. The length of time to finalise the estate will generally be influenced by the complexity of the deceased’s affairs and whether there is property to be sold or tax reliefs claimed. 

The work will be carried out by our experienced team whose details can be found by clicking on the links below.

Please contact us by telephone 01603 625231 or email privateclient@cozens-hardy.com  if you would like a personalised quote for assistance with an estate.

To find out more, call us on: 01603 625231