Probate & Estate Administration

Administering an Estate when someone dies can be a daunting task, especially as this will often coincide with simultaneously having to deal with the emotional aspect of losing a family member or friend.

Where First Equitable are not named as an Executor of an estate, we are at hand to provide help and assistance with the administration tasks on behalf of the executors. This can help remove some of the stress and pressure and ensure the responsibilities are carried out in line with the wishes of the deceased.

Grant of Probate

Grant of Probate (or administration as it is referred if the person died without a valid Will) is the process of obtaining the legal right to administer a deceased person’s estate. The Grant of Probate is often requested by financial institutions to access bank accounts, sell assets and possessions and settle any debts. The probate process is complete once the estate has been identified, any debts and taxes due have been paid, and the inheritance has been distributed.
Probate Is not always necessary. For example, you may not need probate if the person died:
Only had savings
Owned investments or money jointly with others – as this automatically passes to the surviving owner unless agreed otherwise.
Owned land or property as ‘joint tenants’ with others – as this will automatically pass to the surviving owners.

How long does probate take?

Probate timescales will ultimately depend on the size and complexity of the estate. Typically, this will range between 6 to 12 months. If the estate is relatively straightforward and there is a Will in place, it can be done within 6 months; where there is no Will, or the estate cannot easily be identified or valued it will usually take longer.

Do I need to use a probate specialist?

For more straightforward estates and/or where people have the necessary skills or time, they may choose to deal with probate on their own. However, dealing with probate carries personal liabilities and obligations for those involved and who may not be fully aware of what is required of them. Ask yourself the following:

Do you have sufficient time or expertise to deal with the estate?
Are there any income or gains that will need to be reported?
Is the estate liable for inheritance tax?
Is the Will likely to be contested or are there concerns regarding the validity of the Will?
Is the Will complex in any way? – Does it feature trusts or are foreign assets or property involved?
Does the estate contain business or agricultural assets?

Let us help

If you are looking for some peace of mind, First Equitable can provide you with a competitively priced service – no matter the complexity of the estate – providing you and your family with valuable peace of mind.

Please contact us if you would like to arrange a complimentary initial consultation or to receive a personalised fee quotation.

Probate Pricing Information

At First Equitable we pride ourselves on providing a personalised and bespoke service to every client. Following your complimentary consultation, where your requirements will be discussed in detail, we will provide you with a personalised fee quotation. This will either be on a fixed fee basis or an indicative range, depending on the assignment. We will always communicate and agree fees with you in advance of commencing any work.

Our fees take into consideration the time spent on your case, the level of skill and responsibility, the level of risk and the importance and value of the advice that we provide. As a result, and to ensure our fees remain competitive, the cost for individual assignments will vary.

Below are some example scenarios to provide you with a likely indication of our fee ranges.

1. Obtaining the Grant of Probate – Simple, Low Value Estate


  • Valid UK will, not likely to be contentious
  • UK based executors
  • Bank accounts and investments only
  • Low value / non-taxable estate

Indicative Cost: £1,750 – £2,500 (excluding VAT)

2. Obtaining the Grant of Probate –Taxable Estate


  • Valid UK will, not likely to be contentious
    Small number of beneficiaries
  • Valuation of assets straightforward
  • One property (main residence)
  • High value assets / investments
  • Inheritance tax calculation / return (IHT400)

Indicative Cost £4,000 – £6,000 (excluding VAT)

3. Full Estate Administration

This includes the above scenarios, and in addition:

  • Take control and gather the assets of the estate
  • Pay any debts of the estate, including settling tax liabilities
  • Finalise the estate tax
  • Pay any legacies
  • Transfer the remaining balance to the residuary beneficiaries; and
  • Prepare the estate accounts

Indicative Cost £6,000 + (excluding VAT) depending on complexity of estate and work required.

Please note that in addition to the fees quoted above, there may be a small number of additional charges that apply – such as probate application fees and search costs. In all cases, relevant expected costs will be outlined in writing prior to the commencement of work.

Take control of your financial future

Contact First Equitable today and take control of your financial future; together we will chart your journey towards achieving your goals and objectives.