Everyone affected by a loved one’s passing goes through a terrible and trying time. However, the burden of managing the paperwork and administration that must be completed when someone passes away can make the situation much more unpleasant for family members.
Pearl Lemon Legal can assist with reducing the stress associated with the probate and estate administration processes if you have lost a loved one or a family member as your fixed fee probate solicitors. We have extensive legal experience in this area and are committed to offering a competent and sympathetic service at this trying time.
We have a great deal of expertise handling complicated and international estates, and we provide the family with comprehensive guidance on wider tax and succession planning.
The legal process of probate will grant a will’s executors the necessary power to manage the estate and carry out the final wishes of the beloved person who has sadly passed away.
You will be in charge of managing the probate process if you are the executor of the will, which may be more than one person by the way, so it may be you and other parties.
In essence, you will need probate before you sell any property. Additionally, you will probably need to file for probate if you need to distribute any assets. You will have the legal right to carry out the instructions of the will after you have been granted probate.
The executors may then take several actions, including closing bank accounts, selling the decedent’s possessions, selling shares, transferring property to the beneficiaries, or closing investment accounts. So getting probate – and doing so as quickly and efficiently as possible – can be a big deal.
Due to the unique nature of each will and set of assets, the probate process can and will vary from case to case. Any executor of the will can have the probate procedure made much simpler with the assistance of fixed fee probate solicitors, such as those experienced personnel on the Pearl Lemon Legal team.
Usually, the probate procedure will follow this basic process:
After registering the deceased’s death, you must make sure you have copies of their death certificate before taking any further action. You will undoubtedly need the death certificate to obtain any access to handle their assets, whether or not you later require probate.
Once you have this document, it’s critical to ascertain whether the deceased left a will. If so, be sure the executor or executors designated in the will are the ones handling the ongoing steps. Only the executor(s) should participate in the probate process.
The assets and estate that the deceased left behind must then be evaluated. All pertinent companies, financial institutions, and governmental organizations must be contacted. The complexity of the estate and whether the organizations require probate will determine whether you need to move forward with the grant of probate and what to do next.
The next step is to submit a grant of probate application. This document enables the will’s executor to carry out the instructions laid forth in the will, owning and managing the assets as necessary. Where expert assistance is most frequently needed is in this step. Fixed fee probate solicitors are very helpful at this point because the application process can be difficult.
At this point, the payment of any Inheritance Tax Return (IHT) amounts owing is also necessary, thus it’s critical to comprehend or value the asset. Again, because of the complexity of this work, a lawyer can provide guidance and assistance to ensure that your IHT is lawful while also seeking to maximize the result whenever possible.
As soon as you acquire the grant of probate, you should start sending copies to everyone who needs to know. This will give you complete access to the assets. You should make sure that all outstanding bills have been paid in full before moving forward.
You should now have complete ownership, permission to manage and distribute any assets in accordance with the directions laid out in the will, and ownership of the assets after any obligations have been settled.
The Intestacy Rules will offer direction in cases where there is no will in place as to what is necessary. Again, as these can be difficult to navigate, the guidance of a fixed fee probate solicitor may prove invaluable.
Probate may not always be necessary, depending on the circumstances and the requirements of the asset owner.
In other words, there aren’t generally clear rules on whether probate is necessary, and depending on the requirements, some organizations will release funds or assets without probate.
Here are a few illustrations to help explain the various scenarios:
In order for the executors of the will to be authorized to sign the contract and sell the property to the new buyers if there is a residence in the deceased person’s name, probate is required.
Even though a will is in place, probate may not be necessary if there is a bank account that has a small balance.
The bank or building society may demand probate before they will close the account if the assets comprise joint bank accounts with the spouse and one individual account.
They can insist on getting probate before the investment bond can be sold or transferred if it is included in the assets.
Jointly held properties might be challenging. In essence, there are two alternative approaches to co-owning a house. These are beneficial joint tenancies and tenancies in common.
The surviving partner shall immediately inherit the deceased partner’s portion of the property if the partners were beneficial joint tenants at the time of death. Unless there are additional assets that are not jointly owned, neither probate nor letters of administration are required.
The surviving partner does not necessarily inherit the other partner’s portion if the couple are tenants in common. In order for the personal representative to transfer it to the person who will inherit the portion of the estate under the terms of the will or the intestacy laws, probate or letters of administration will be required.
The final say on whether or not probate is necessary will rest with banks and other pertinent organizations. Before moving forward with your application, it can be worthwhile, depending on the specifics, to confirm whether a grant of probate is necessary.
It can take two to twelve weeks to obtain the grant of probate. This timeline is reliant on how quickly applications can be reviewed and processed by the Probate Office.
Depending on the amount, size, and complexity of the estate and assets, the entire probate process—from a fixed fee probate solicitor taking instructions to helping with case closure—can take anywhere between 12 weeks and 2 years.
Technically, you don’t need a solicitor at all to complete the probate process, you can do it all by yourself. While some people do manage to achieve probate without a lawyer, it is generally advised to hire one when the stakes are high legally.
Keep in mind that beneficiaries may file a lawsuit against the executor or administrator if something does start to be questioned, and the government is watching too. Many people find that working with a legal representative on their side is the best course of action for them.
We call ourselves fixed fee probate solicitors for a reason. The price you are quoted at the beginning of our relationship is the price paid, even if probate issues drag on and become rather complex. To ensure a quick and affordable approach to probate, we take pride in making sure that all fees, advice, and support are conveyed and taken into account in a timely manner.
We are aware that probate occurs at a delicate time and that it can be stressful and difficult, quickly turning into an unpleasant process.
From the registration of the death to the creation of inheritance tax accounts, wills, and trusts, our knowledgeable and compassionate probate solicitors can help you with every step of the probate procedure. And you, as an executor, will often not be the one paying our fees. The executor is not held personally accountable for any legal bills that must be paid; they can be paid from the estate’s assets.
For a free, no-obligation conversation about how we might be able to help with your current legal issues, please contact us today.