Wills, Trust & Probate

How we Can Help You

Our probate department is headed by the senior partner who is supported by other team members including qualified solicitors and support staff.

We hold many years of experience in handling complex probate matters and can assist you with any related issues


If we have agreed a fixed fee, we will do the following:-

  • Appoint a dedicated fee earner to handle your case
  • Have an initial consultation meeting with you face to face or by telephone
  • Identify the legally appointed
  • Executor/Administrator of the estate
  • Identify issues of concern regarding the administration you will need to be aware of
  • Prepare financial statements based on the information you have provided for your approval
  • Complete the relevant HMRC forms on your behalf based on the information provided by you
  • Prepare the Oath for you to swear
  • Submit the application to the Probate Registry
    Forward the Grant of Representation to you


How long the matter takes to be concluded?

Administration of the deceased’s estate is a complex matter to be dealt with. Although given a time-scale in legal matters is not straightforward due to legal complexities involved, however, a relatively simple and straight-forward estates can potentially be completed within around six months. The estates involving complexities, such as Inheritance Tax issues involvements, may take between 12 to 15 months to get completed. However, it is to borne in mind that the above are just the guideline timescales and each case is decided according to its own particular circumstances and difficulties involved.

Executors stand with huge responsibilities on one hand to administer the estate of the deceased and on the other hand to be as clear as possible to the government departments in terms of the potential tax issues. Executors are unable to apply for a Grant of Probate until such time as they have completed the fullest possible enquiries into a person’s estate to ensure that all assets have been found and correctly valued.

We liaise and communicate with different stakeholders such as banks, building societies, investment companies etc to establish exactly what assets were still held and their values at the date of the death of the deceased.

Once Probate has been granted it generally then takes two to three months to realise all the assets and pay all the outstanding debts and any legacies. During this time we will also open up negotiations with HMRC to find out what tax Returns are required to be completed up until the date of death of the deceased. Once these matters are dealt with, we are then in a position to complete the administration of the Estate and at that point the Executors duties cease.

The likely disbursements to be incurred could be as follows:

  • Probate Court fee – £158.00 (inclusive of six Court Sealed copies) *
  • Swear fee – £5.00 plus £2.00 per exhibit (per Executor/Administrator) *
  • Stockbrokers’ valuation and verification fee for public shareholdings – £20.00 per holding
  • Stockbrokers’ disposal/transfer charges – to be confirmed
  • Certainty Will Search – £114.00
  • Land Registry Office Copy Entries – £3.00 per Title *
  • Land Registry Registrations fees – to be confirmed
  • Asset Search – £25.00 to £150.00
  • Statutory Advertisements – £280.00 to £400.00
  • Bankruptcy Searches – up to £9.00 per Beneficiary having three names
  • Counsel’s fees – to be confirmed, if required
  • Caveat – £20.00
  • Probate Search – £10.00
  • Standing Search – £20.00
  • Birth, Deaths Registry Office Searches – circa £20.00 per certificate
    Accountants’ fees – circa £600.00 for a simple Trust and Estate Tax Return
  • Independent Financial Adviser – to be confirmed


The above figures are illustrative only and the actual costs for disbursements may vary. Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties. We handle the payment of disbursements on your behalf and those monies are usually payable from estate monies to ensure the matter progresses smoothly and without any unnecessary delays.

In situations where we are instructed to deal with the administration of a straightforward estate in its entirety, we charge an hourly rate (which range between £175 – £250 exclusive of VAT), depending on the experience and seniority of the fee earner conducting your matter.

Our fees for a straightforward matter of estate administration range between £1,500.00 and £4,500.00 plus VAT. These figures are guideline estimates only, and are subject to adjustments depending on particular facts of each matter.

Please be aware that our indicative fees do not include the transfer, purchase by Beneficiaries, or sale of a deceased’s property. In addition to this firm’s fees there will be disbursements which are dependent upon the assets which comprise the estate and the protections required by an Executor / Administrator and these are set out under the section “Disbursements”.

In complex Estates we charge an hourly rate currently not exceeding £250.00 plus VAT, dependent on the Fee Earner dealing with your matter. In addition to the time spent on complex Estates, we may charge a mark-up of 0.5% value of the Gross Estate where we consider this to be fair and reasonable.

When dealing with the administration of an estate, our charging is usually based on the time spent on the matter. When instructed on a probate matter, a dedicated and experienced qualified Solicitor is allocated to handle the day-to-day responsibility of the matter. As above the starting point of charging is based on Hourly rates (which ranges between £175 to £250 plus vat), depending on the experience of the Solicitor running daily conduct of the matter.

The amount of time required to be spent on each matter varies and is dependent on various factors including how larger the estate is, how much are the liabilities the deceased left to be dealt with etc. we also offer a percentage to be deducted from the value of the estate that we are asked to deal with. This is usually agreed in a transaction where the full estate value is apparent, and we are asked to provide full service from start to bottom of the matter. Usually, a percentage of 2% to 3% by the value of the estate is agreed.

Once the grant of probate/ or a letter of administration (in absence of a valid will) is obtained, the next step of transferring or selling of the property included in the estate of the deceased is handled by our experienced conveyancers.

The total start-to-end cost in a probate matter is dependent on various factors including the number of beneficiaries, number of properties involved in the estate, number of bank accounts involved in an estate, etc. If there are several beneficiaries, multiple properties involved along with multiple bank/building society accounts left by the deceased, costs are likely to be high compared to average probate transactions where usually one to two bank accounts and one property is involved.

On top of our costs, there are usually Disbursements which are incurred in almost every transaction. Disbursements are the fees/charges payable to third parties, such as fees payable to probate registry, Post in The London Gazette and Local Newspaper, fees payable for searches conducted with Land Registry, etc. The advertisement in London Gazette is absolutely important which helps to protect Executors against unknown creditors. We will only advise disbursements that are absolutely necessary for a particular transaction.

Next Steps

Please call or email us to arrange an appointment to discuss the details of your matter in person with one of our experienced and dedicated solicitors. Please remember to bring with you to your initial appointment the following documents:

  • Original Death Certificate
  • Original Will (if applicable)
  • Your photo identification and two proofs of address (no older than three months)
  • All information regarding the estate assets, liabilities, income and outgoings


The fee for the initial consultation will be £150.00 plus VAT totaling £180.00 as long as the consultation appointment does not go beyond 1 hour. In the event you instruct us then the fee paid for consultation will be adjusted in the fee to be charged for the main case.

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