The government has revived proposals to substantially increase the Court fees charged when applying for probate. This is on the basis that it wants probate applications to subsidise the cost of other parts of the Court system.
Currently a flat Court fee of £215 applies in England and Wales or £155 if you use a solicitor for all estate over £5,000. Before 2014 these were £105 for the general public or £45 for a solicitor applications. The new charges proposed will be linked to the size of the estate and will be as follows:
· Up to £50,000: no charge
· £50,000- £300,000: £250
· £300,000- £500,000: £750
· £500,000 to £1m: £2,500
· £1m to £1.6m: £4,000
· £1.6m- £2m: £5,000
· Above £2m: £6,000
The government’s previous proposals to raise probate registry fees up to £20,000 were postponed on the basis of lack of Parliamentary time when it called the last general election.
There is likely to be a surge of applications leading to delays obtaining probate as the introduction of the new fees draws near. These may cause problems for estates with houses to sell.
If you have a family member who has died recently ask our experienced team for advice on obtaining the grant of probate before the fee increase.