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Wills & Probate
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At Blacks we specialise in providing a friendly and cost effective private client service to individuals and business owners.

Pricing and Service


What we offer you
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We recognise the importance of having all of your private client affairs in order. We help clients with the preparation of Wills to ensure the people whom you want to inherit actually do so. We can also ensure your Will is drafted in the most inheritance tax efficient manner possible and, if appropriate, make sure your Will includes care fee planning so that your assets pass to your chosen beneficiaries. 

We also help families by carrying out the full administration of an estate when a loved one passes away. If there is any dispute over a Will on grounds such as incapacity or duress then we are able to assist in resolving the dispute. 

Our experienced Team is also able to help with drafting Lasting powers of attorney and applications to the Court of Protection for deputyship orders.

Inheritance tax planning through establishing lifetime trusts is also a valuable service we provide.

 

Probate Services and Pricing

Applying for the Grant of Probate 

We can apply on your behalf for the Grant of Probate to an estate. This applies to cases where:

  • There is a valid will.

  • The estate is below the nil rate band (currently £325,000).

  • There is no inheritance tax payable and the executors do not need to submit a full account to HMRC

  • All relevant information relating to the assets and liabilities of the estate are provided.

We will:

  • Meet with you to discuss the estate and your instructions

  • Prepare the probate papers including the oath, Revenue forms, and any necessary notices or affidavits.

  • Meet with you to arrange the signing of the probate papers.

  • Arrange for the submission of the papers to the probate registry.

Our fees for obtaining the Grant of Probate only are £950.00 plus VAT.  Our fees do not include correspondence with the institutions to obtain the necessary estate information and the administration and distribution of the estate assets.  Such work would be charged in addition, based on hourly rates of between £165 plus VAT and £230 plus VAT, based on experience.

We can correspond with the institutions to obtain the necessary estate information to apply for the Grant of Probate in cases where:

  • There is no more than one property
  • There are no more than six bank or building society accounts
  • There are no other intangible assets

Applying for the Grant of Probate and obtaining the estate information

We anticipate that corresponding with the institutions will involve an additional 3 to 4 hours work in addition to the Grant of Probate application fixed fee of £950.00 plus VAT. The hourly rates of our fee earners range from £165.00 plus VAT to £230.00 plus VAT.  Our total costs (including the Grant of Probate fixed fee) are estimated at between £1,445.00 plus VAT and £1,870.00 plus VAT.  Our fees do not include the administration and distribution of the estate.

The exact cost will depend on the individual circumstances of the matter. For example, if there is one bank account and no property, costs will be at the lower end of the range. If there are multiple bank accounts and a property, costs will be at the higher end.

Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of any disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

Disbursements are not included in our fees and include:

  • Probate application fee of £155.00
  • Sealed copies of the grant of £0.50 each
  • Swearing of the oath by each personal representative of £7.00 each

Additional disbursements may be required depending on individual requirements.  

Applying for the Grant of Probate, then Collecting and Distributing the Assets 

We can apply for the Grant of Probate on your behalf and then deal with the administration and distribution of the estate so as to handle the full process for you. Our stated fees apply for estates where:

  • There is a valid Will.
  • There is no more than one property.
  • There are no more than six bank or building society accounts.
  • There are no other intangible assets.
  • There are one to eight beneficiaries.
  • There are no disputes between beneficiaries on division of assets. If disputes arise this is likely to lead to an increase in costs.
  • There is no inheritance tax payable and the executors do not need to submit a full account to HMRC.
  • There are no claims made against the estate.

We will:

  • Meet with you to discuss the estate and your instructions.
  • Liaise with the relevant institutions to obtain the required information for the probate papers.
  • Advise on the appropriate inheritance tax reliefs that can be claimed.
  • Prepare the probate papers including the oath, Revenue forms, and any necessary notices or affidavits.
  • Meet with you to arrange the signing of the probate papers and arrange for the submission of the papers to the probate registry.
  • Liaise with the Revenue to check that all tax matters are up to date.
  • Collect in all assets and deal with the distribution of the estate.

This will ordinarily take between 12 to 25 hours work. The hourly rates of our fee earners range from £165.00 plus VAT to £230.00 plus VAT based on experience.  Our total costs ordinarily range from between £1,980.00 plus VAT and £5,750.00 plus VAT.

The exact cost will depend on the individual circumstances of the matter. For example, if there is only one beneficiary and no property, costs will be at the lower end of the range. If there are multiple beneficiaries, a property and multiple bank accounts, costs will be at the higher end.

Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as court fees. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

Disbursements are not included in our fee and include:

  • Probate application fee of £155.00
  • Sealed copies of the grant of £0.50 each
  • Swearing of the oath by each personal representative of £7.00 each

Additional disbursements may be required depending on individual requirements.

Potential additional costs:

  • If there is no will, the estate consists of any shareholdings (stocks and bonds) and if there is further inheritance tax advice required (including claiming the transferable nil rate band) then there are likely to be additional costs that could range significantly depending on the estate and how it is to be dealt with. We can give you a more accurate quote once we have more information.
  • Dealing with the sale or transfer of any property in the estate is not included in our listed fees.

How long will this take?

On average, estates that fall within this range are usually distributed within 3 to 6 months from the Grant of Probate. Typically, obtaining the Grant of Probate takes 6 – 8 weeks from your initial instructions to us.

Meet the Team

Our Wills and Probate team have many years collective experience in private client matters including Wills, Inheritance Tax planning, the preparation of Lasting Powers of Attorney and Court of Protection matters.  The team also deal with probate applications, the administration of estates and advising clients on the creation of trusts.

 Nick Rhodes, Partner and Head of Department, supervises the team on all matters.


 

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Introducing
Wills & Probate
Nick Rhodes
Nick Rhodes
Partner
0113 227 9247
NRhodes@LawBlacks.com

Nick Rhodes trained at Blacks Solicitors and qualified as a Solicitor in 2006. He became a Partner in 2016 and is currently Head of the Wills & Probate team.

He has a wide range of experience in the preparation of Wills, which can include highly effective care fee planning as well as Inheritance Tax (IHT) Planning for high net worth individuals and business owners. Over the years, Nick has helped numerous families preserve their wealth so that it is passed on to future generations.

He also assists people who are planning for the future by preparing Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs) which allows family members named in the LPA to assist the person who made it in the event of their incapacity.

Nick also deals with the Administration of Estates following bereavement. He is able to collate all the paperwork necessary to complete the probate papers to lead to a Grant of Representation to the Estate, and also corresponds with the Inland Revenue to ensure any IHT due is correctly paid. Nick commonly advises clients on mitigating IHT following a death by way of a Deed of Variation.

Nick is recognised by The Legal 500 for “liaising well with clients and understanding what they are trying to achieve, and making sure they understand what is being put in place”. He is also described as “very personable and approachable”.

Lucy Rigden
Lucy Rigden
Associate
0113 227 9263
LRigden@LawBlacks.com

Lucy Rigden joined Blacks Solicitors in 2011 where she trained and then qualified as a Solicitor in 2013. She became a Partner in 2018 and works in the Wills & Probate team where she specialises in all aspects of private client law.

Lucy is an expert in the administration of Lifetime Trusts and Will Trusts, assists with the administration of estates with a foreign element, and regularly prepares tax returns and estate accounts on behalf of Trustees.

In addition, Lucy also advises clients with regards to Inheritance Tax Planning, including the newly introduced Residence Nil-Rate Band, and more routine matters such as Lasting Powers of Attorney.

Lucy regularly presents seminars to financial advisors and accountants and is recognised by The Legal 500 for her work in estate administration.

Nicola White
Nicola White
Associate
0113 227 9235
NWhite@LawBlacks.com

Nicola White has worked at Blacks Solicitors since 2016 and is currently an Associate Solicitor in the Wills & Probate team, where she leads the Firm’s Contentious Probate service.

Prior to qualifying as a Solicitor in 2007, Nicola worked as a social worker in a hospice and for a local authority specialising in older people’s care.

After initially working in a general litigation team Nicola began to specialise in contentious trust and probate matters and has practiced solely in this area for the last seven years.

This covers issues such as: contesting the validity of a Will; claims by disappointed Beneficiaries for reasonable financial provision under the Inheritance (provision for family and dependants) Act 1975; disputes with or between Executors; and disputes relating to Trusts or Trustees, working for both Claimants and Defendants.

Eleanor Eastwood
Eleanor Eastwood
Paralegal
0113 227 9392
EEastwood@LawBlacks.com

Eleanor Eastwood joined Blacks Solicitors in 2016 and is currently a Paralegal in the Wills & Probate team. She has recently completed the GDL part time at BPP University in Leeds.

Ellie has worked on, and assisted with, a variety of Wills and probate matters including the preparation of Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs), the Administration of Estates, and the regulation of Trusts. She also deals with a number of ongoing Power of Attorney cases.

In addition, Ellie has recently undertaken training to become a Dementia Friend which is an initiative to change people’s perceptions of Dementia.

Gail Sandford
Gail Sandford
Paralegal
0113 227 9253
GSandford@LawBlacks.com

Gail Sandford joined Blacks Solicitors in August 2016, after 16 years in another Leeds based practice, and is a Paralegal in the Wills and Probate team.

She advises on a range of private client matters including all aspects of Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney (LPAs), and the Administration of Trusts and all types of Estates.

Gail is a trusted adviser to colleagues and clients alike, assisting a range of individuals, and families, all of whom value her detailed technical knowledge and her compassionate approach.

She is also an affiliate member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (STEP) and in 2016 she achieved the acclaimed STEP Advanced Certificate in Will Preparation.

Nadine Owens
Nadine Owens
Solicitor
0113 322 2824
NOwens@LawBlacks.com

Nadine Owens qualified as a Solicitor in 2014 and joined Blacks Solicitors in 2017, where she currently works in the Wills & Probate team.

Nadine specialises in the preparation of Wills, estate planning and the administration of Lasting Powers

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