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Our charges explained
We calculate our costs by reference to the time we spend on the matter, for example in dealing with correspondence, telephone calls and emails, preparing forms and having meetings with you and others.
Time calculations are based on units of 6 minutes each so one hour equals 10 units. Generally letters written, telephone calls and emails are charged at one unit, unless they are unusually long.
The hourly rate is £216 so one unit is £21.60. However letters received are charged at a reduced rate of £14 per item. Short standard letters received, for example acknowledging receipt of documents etc., are not charged.
In addition we also charge a percentage of the value of the estate. We charge 0.5% of the value of the deceased’s house if solely owned. We do not charge for jointly owned property which has passed to the joint owner. We charge 1% of the value of the rest of the estate which is solely owned by the deceased. We do not charge for jointly owned assets which have passed to the joint owner.
VAT is added to our costs. The current VAT rate is 20%.
Because every estate is different we are unable to give an exact cost figure until we have full details of the assets and the terms of the Will. If there are multiple, or complicated assets and multiple beneficiaries, or the Will is complex, our costs will be higher.
Example of charges:
For an estate where there is a valid Will naming three beneficiaries, no disputes or claims arise, there is no Inheritance Tax liability requiring a full HMRC account, which has one solely owned property worth £150000 and four bank accounts totalling £100000 we would expect to spend a total of 4 hours working on the matter and receive 10 letters.
This work would include meeting the executor(s) to discuss the estate and how it will be dealt with, obtaining probate values of all of the assets and liabilities, preparing the HMRC short form IHT Return and papers to apply for the Grant of Probate, contacting the beneficiaries, gathering in and selling the assets as required, paying the liabilities, producing estate accounts and having these approved by the executor and beneficiaries, paying any income tax due and distributing the estate.
Our costs are likely to be £2754.00. VAT is charged on our costs at £50.80 giving a total of £30.80.
Disbursements are payments we make to others in dealing with the estate. They are in addition to our costs. The following are the usual disbursements needed:
Probate Court fee £155 payable to the Probate Registry. Official Probate Court copies of the Grant document which may be required are £0.50 each
Bankruptcy search fee £2 per beneficiary
Where we are asked to carry out limited work, for example to obtain the Grant of Representation only, we may offer a fixed fee. Although the fixed fee will depend on the work to be done, our usual fixed fee for obtaining the Grant only is £750 plus VAT.