It has recently been announced that, on an as yet unconfirmed date in May 2017, new probate court fees will come into effect.
The present rules set a fixed cost for all applications to the Probate Registry at either £155 for a Solicitor’s application or £215 for a Personal Application. However, in an effort to increase the revenue generated, from May 2017 the fee will be based on the value of the estate, and will range from nothing to a substantial £20,000.
The fee structure is as follows:
|Value of Estate ||Fee Payable |
|0 - £50,000 ||Nil |
|£50,001 - £300,000 ||£300 |
|£300,001 - £500,000 ||£1,000 |
|£500,001 - £1,000,000 ||£4,000 |
|£1,000,001 - £1,600,000 ||£8,000 |
|£1,600,001 - £2,000,000 ||£12,000 |
|£2,000,001 or more ||£20,000 |
The change has been heavily criticised as an additional tax on Estates and an unfair mechanism to subsidise other areas of the court structure. Further, full details (including an implementation date) are yet to be revealed even at this late stage.
We foresee the increases causing a number of issues in estates, not least trying to raise the funds to pay the court fees in advance of having access to the Deceased’s assets.
We would encourage anyone who has suffered a recent bereavement to take advice at an early opportunity to ensure that they are not unfairly caught out by this new system. For more information please contact a member of our Wills and Probate Team on 01279 755777 or email email@example.com