When someone dies there can be a lot of work involved in dealing with the administration of their estate. It is often an emotional and difficult time to have to go through a complicated legal process. We are happy to help personal representatives, who may be executors or administrators, to deal with all of these issues.
There are many things to do when a loved one dies, from arranging the funeral, to going through personal papers to establish what assets and debts there may be. Our experienced and friendly probate solicitors can assist by advising personal representatives on what they need to do and even deal with the entire estate on your behalf.
At Spire Solicitors LLP, our highly regarded and experienced probate solicitors have specific expertise in:
- Obtaining grants of probate if there is a will
- Grants of letters of administration if there is no will
- Dealing with the administration of an estate and distributing this to the beneficiaries
- Preparing estate accounts for personal representatives
- Preparing and advising on inheritance tax returns
- Post-death arrangements to reduce inheritance tax
What Is Probate?
Probate is the process of dealing with a person’s estate after they have passed away. This can include distributing assets according to their will and repaying debts. If you have been appointed as the executor of a person’s estate, there are specific rules that govern how the estate will be distributed and how to notify the authorities.
Why Do You Need To Obtain Probate?
An estate will need to have a Grant of Probate, which is akin to a Court Order, if the deceased owned property or other assets in their sole name. The Grant of Probate authorises the executor to access and take possession of the deceased’s assets. Depending on the value of the assets, they will often require a Grant of Probate before they can be cashed in or sold.
How Do You Value an Estate for Probate?
Valuing the estate for probate purposes is one of the first tasks that will be completed by the executor. To start with, it is useful to make a list of all of the deceased’s assets, debts and any non-tax-exempt gifts that were made in the seven years before death.
Can You Settle an Estate Without Probate?
You can settle an estate without a Grant of Probate if the deceased did not own property and their sole owned assets, such as bank accounts, are under the financial institution’s threshold for a Grant. If all of the deceased’s assets are in joint names, they may be able to settle the estate without a Grant of Probate as these will, by law, pass to the surviving joint owner.
How Long Does Probate Take?
The length of time involved in the application process largely depends on the value and nature of the assets in the estate.
Our team of helpful and friendly probate solicitors are here to guide you through the process of dealing with the financial affairs of a loved one that has passed away. We can assist you at every step in the process whilst offering support and advice.
We have created a printable guide to probate below:
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