Probate

Probate Solicitors

In times of bereavement, we can offer a very supportive and
helpful probate service to clients.

Probate FAQ | Our Team | Case Study

It is a legal process which involves getting court approval for the will of the deceased person. The process is all about identifying and cataloguing the property, money and possession of the deceased person and distributing it as per the directions provided in the will document. The probate document transfers the ownership of the possessions of the deceased to the legally named executor of wills.

It is the job of the executor to follow the terms and conditions of the will documents and ensure complete and successful implementation of the terms of the will document. The core purpose of the probate is to carry out the wishes and requests of the deceased person related to the estate distribution and rightful ownership.

Iftekhar Shah
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Probate FAQs

What is the grant of probate?

If the deceased person has completed his will, the executor and administrator will have to apply for the grant of the probate in the courts. The grant of probate is a document authorising the named executor of the will to deal and handle all the financial matters and carry out the property affairs as per the terms of the will. The grant of probate makes the executor administrator of the estate of the deceased person.

What is meant by the grant of a letter of administration?

A letter of administration is provided by the courts which authorise an individual to the administrator and manage the estate of the deceased person. These letters are issued only when the deceased person has no will document to appoint the legal executor of the estate. The grant of letter of administration empowers a close relative or family member to take control of the estate affairs. This legal authorisation is also referred to as a grant of representation as to the family member or close relative act as a representative of estate management and distribution.

What happens if the deceased person hasn’t left any will document?

If the person dies without a will, it means he/she has died intestate. In the case of the intestate, the laws of intestacy are applied. These laws determine what will happen to your residue property and the status of estate distribution. It includes bank accounts, real estate property and other tangible assets that you owned at the time of the death.

However, the laws of intestacy differ from case to case. The legalities of these laws vary significantly on the basis of the marital status of the deceased person. Often, the estate of the deceased person is distributed among the close relatives and direct family members who can be entitled to possible inheritance. Such acquaintances include surviving spouse, siblings, parents, uncles, nephews and nieces. In case there is no distant or close relative or acquaintance found, the entire estate becomes the property of the state and current government.

If the person dies without a will, it means he/she has died intestate. In the case of the intestate, the laws of intestacy are applied. These laws determine what will happen to your residue property and the status of estate distribution. It includes bank accounts, real estate property and other tangible assets that you owned at the time of the death.

However, the laws of intestacy differ from case to case. The legalities of these laws vary significantly on the basis of the marital status of the deceased person. Often, the estate of the deceased person is distributed among the close relatives and direct family members who can be entitled to possible inheritance. Such acquaintances include surviving spouse, siblings, parents, uncles, nephews and nieces. In case there is no distant or close relative or acquaintance found, the entire estate becomes the property of the state and current government.

What happens if the deceased has unpaid loans and debts?

The estate owned by the deceased is used to pay off the debts and unpaid loans before distributing the property, money and possession among the beneficiaries. The outstanding debts and loans consume a significant fraction of your assets that you left behind for inheritance. The executor of the will is responsible for dealing with all of your financial and legal matters and is allowed to leverage your assets for debts. It refers to issuing cheques from bank accounts or selling part of the property to pay off the unpaid debts and loans. In general, surviving spouses, joint account holders and family members are responsible for arranging the money to pay off the loans and debts.

How long does the entire probate process take?

The time duration of this legal process depends on the complexity of the existing assets and estate affairs of the deceased person. It could take from a couple of months to a whole year. However, after the oath swearing ceremony, the probate is usually granted and received in three or four weeks. The time duration of this process also depends on the collaboration between the personal representative and the beneficiaries.

Is the estate taxable?

In case the probate involves any taxable estate, the case cannot be closed or finalised until a closing letter is issued from the Internal Revenue Services. The closing letter involves the unpaid and due taxes of the estate and can take up to six to eight months once the estate tax returns are filed. However, there are a few estates that are subjected to federal estate tax laws and charges.

Wills & Probate Team

Dorothy Turner
Solicitor

READY TO HELP

Wills Case Study

We were approached by an elderly person in Bedfordshire who wanted to get a will drafted at home due to the Covid-19 pandemic. We assisted them through:

  • Home visits which was convenient for for them;
  • Window service for checking and signing will
  • Payment was collected through our simple online system
  • The service was delivered in a matter of days