May 28, 2024

Probate: The Benefits of Instructing a Solicitor

This post was written by: Emma Wallace

Firstly, what is probate? Well, probate is Latin for ‘to prove’, and in modern day English, it is the process of proving the Will. In other words, it is the legal and financial process of dealing with someone’s money, house and possessions when they die.

Dealing with the death of a loved one can be extremely distressing and overwhelming, especially if it is the first time that you have experienced a bereavement.

If you are a personal representative in charge of dealing with an estate, this can come with a lot of responsibility which you may not feel up to when grieving the loss of someone close.

This is why many people choose to instruct a firm of solicitors to take care of these responsibilities for them. It also ensures that everything is carried out accurately, legally and correctly.

What probate services can we offer?

We obtain accurate date of death figures for each asset and liability that the deceased owned at the date of their death and use it to obtain a Grant of Representation, if required (a Grant of Probate when there is a Will or a Grant of Letters of Administration if there is no Will). For smaller estates, a short probate application will suffice, but for larger estates, you may require a full account to be submitted to HMRC which can be a daunting process to tackle on your own.  

With our probate clients, we always ask how much work we should take on in terms of the administration of the estate. Our service is not one-size-fits all, so instructing us as your solicitor does not mean that we must do everything. Although we can provide a full service, it is up to our client as to how much work we carry out. We can be as involved or uninvolved as you’d like us to be.

Please contact our private client team for a free initial consultation to discuss probate should you require our assistance.

Jargon Buster:

Executor: The person/people named in a Will who is responsible for dealing with the administration of the estate.

Administrator: The person/people responsible for dealing with the administration of the estate when there is no Will.

Personal Representative: A blanket term for Executor or administrator.

Grant of Probate: A legal document which confirms that the Executors of a Will have the authority to deal with the deceased’s assets. This will be required to sell the deceased’s property and some financial organisations require this to encash the funds, depending on the amount of money held in the account.

Grant of Letters of Administration: As above, but when there is no Will. It confirms that the administrators have authority to deal with the estate.

Grant of Representation: A blanket terms for Grant of Probate or Grant of Letters of Administration.