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Probate Fees – changes coming in April 2019

Back in November 2018 the Government announced changes to probate fees. Some will pay almost £6,000 more – but for estates worth less than £50,000, you won’t pay anything at all. Estate and Tax planning is now more vital than ever.

In England and Wales, probate fees, paid when administering someone’s estate after they die, will now be paid as a sliding scale depending on how much the estate is worth, rather than as a flat fee.

Currently families pay a flat £215, or £155 if they apply through a solicitor, on estates over £5,000.

The threshold at which you need to pay probate fees is set to be lifted to £50,000 from April 2019 – according to the Ministry of Justice, this means an extra 25,000 estates per year won’t pay any fees at all.

But if the estate’s value is higher than this, you’ll see an increase in probate fees. Estates worth between £50,000 and £300,000 will be charged £250, while the maximum charge is £6,000 for estates worth £2 million or more.

The fees will depend on the amount the estate is worth.

Estate Value New Fee
Estate worth £50,000 or less £0
Estates worth £50,000 up to £300,000 £250
Estates worth £300,000 up to £500,000 £750
Estates worth £500,000 up to £1 million £2,500
Estates worth £1 million up to £1.6 million £4,000
Estates worth £1.6 million up to £2 million £5,000
Estates worth more than £2 million £6,000

 

These changes will only apply to estates in England and Wales – Scotland and Northern Ireland have different probate fees.

What is probate?

When someone dies and leaves property, money or possessions, assets of any kind this is collectively known as their estate. An executer of the will needs to sort out who gets what.

If an appointed executor has been nominated by the deceased they will need to get what is known as a ‘grant of probate’. The executor will then need to get a ‘grant of representation’ which proves their authority to administer the estate. The process of applying to the court for the grant and document to manage the estate is known as ‘probate’.

Estate & Tax Planning

Estate Planning and Tax Planning is vital to ensure that your business and personal assets are passed on to your chosen beneficiaries in a tax efficient manner consistent with your wishes.

As accountants we obtain an in-depth knowledge of our clients’ financial affairs and are well placed to review long term plans. Inheritance planning is a vital part of our service. We will help with the planning, drawing up of wills and trust deeds to reflect your wishes.

To find out more about Haines Watts visit our website here or please give us a call on 01379 640555 to discuss your options with our Tax Team.

Want to know more? Call us on 01379 640555 or email diss@hwca.com

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