Probate fee increase…the good, the bad and the controversial
An update on rising probate fees
Before Christmas, the House of Lords approved changes to probate fees seeing a banded structure based system being suggested. This would see the fees rise from £155 for law firms (and £215 for individuals) to up to £6,000 on all estates worth over £50,000 (which, after the significant increase in property prices over recent years, is likely to be the majority of estates).
Many have argued that this is another tax being introduced with Parliament arguing that it would improve the court service.
It will inevitably cause problems for executors managing illiquid estates, as the fee has to be obtained before the Grant of Probate can be obtained, and funds cannot be released without a Grant of Probate.
The proposal will be presented before the House of Commons on 7 February 2019. If the Commons approve the changes, it is likely to be introduced and become law by April.
Here are some points to note about the probate fees:-
- For existing estates, submit your probate application before April. If you would like any help about probate, the process and Inheritance Tax returns, please contact our Wills and Probate team.
- Structure your estate in such a way that a Grant of Probate is not needed and therefore saving potentially thousands of pounds. If you would like any advice about this, please contact our Estate Planning team.
For more information please contact us on 01622 690691 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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