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Help with your Will and help for your relatives when you are no longer here. Advice on Powers of Attorney.

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Platt & Fishwick Solicitors

We understand that dealing with Wills and what will happen when you are no longer here are sensitive topics. We can assist with all aspects of Wills and estate planning, the making of applications to the Probate Court for a Grant of Representation (commonly referred to as Probate) and estate administration (including the collecting in of all of the Deceased'd assets, the settlement of any debts and outstanding taxes).

Why should I make a Will?

Making a Will is easy, and the importance of having a valid Will in place cannot be overstated.

Your Will can ensure that your estate is dealt with in accordance with your wishes, and that your assets are inherited by the right people, making the process as painless and straightforward as possible for those loved ones you have left behind.

Your Will can give instructions as to: -

- Who should administer your estate (people known as your executors)

- How your assets are to be distributed – who gets what

- Who should look after any minor children of yours (appointment of guardians)

- Whether you have any specific funeral instructions

Platt and Fishwick can also provide you with expert Inheritance Tax planning advice when drawing up your Will with the aim of mitigating any potential Inheritance Tax liability.

There is no good reason NOT to make a Will.

What happens if I don’t have a Will?

If you die ‘intestate’ (without a Will) the law dictates what will happen to your estate. This means that you will have no control over who administers your assets nor over who gets what.

If you die without a Will:-

• You can’t choose who will administer your estate, which may make things difficult for the loved ones you have left behind, and can complicate and lengthen the estate administration process

• You can’t choose who inherits what. Even if you are married or in a civil partnership, your surviving spouse may not get all of your assets. A surviving partner who wasn't married or in a civil partnership has no automatic right to any of your assets whatsoever.

• Your estate may be liable to pay more Inheritance Tax than it otherwise would have done if you had made a Will incorporating any specialist tax planning advice

How much does a Will cost ?

The charges for preparing a Will vary depending on how complicated your circumstances are, as each Will is tailored to suit our clients’ individual needs.

Our prices start at £99 + VAT for a basic single Will and £150 + VAT for a basic “husband and wife” joint Will.

To find out more, get in touch with us today. Our team of professional, helpful, friendly advisors are waiting to speak to you.

Estate Administration

At Platt and Fishwick, our dedicated specialist Probate team will assist and guide you through all aspects of estate administration, and we will be happy to agree a fixed fee with you at the outset in the vast majority of cases.

Whilst the scope of the work involved in assisting you in any particular case will largely depend on the specific circumstances, there are, broadly speaking, three distinct levels of service relating to estate administration, into which most client instructions will fall. These are 'Grant Only', 'Grant and administration of Estate' and 'Grant and administration of Estate including payment of IHT'.

Grant Only

Under our 'Grant Only' service we will assist you in obtaining the Grant of Probate (or the Grant of Letters of Administration where the Deceased left no Will), which will allow you to deal with the administration of the estate going forward.

This includes making an application to the Probate Court and the preparation and submission of the associated inland revenue account.

There are two distinct type of 'Grant Only' instructions, both of which are charged on a fixed fee basis as follows :-

1. Where the estate is not subject to Inheritance Tax (IHT) and/or where an inland revenue form IHT205 is required

$495 +VAT and disbursements (as listed below)

1. Where the estate is subject to IHT and/or where an inland revenue form IHT400 is required

£895+VAT and disbursements (as listed below)

Please note that the above provides a representative example of the fees applicable in a straightforward 'Grant Only' instruction. In some cases, and for reasons beyond our control, additional work is required before the Grant will issue. This may be, for example, because of a dispute between beneficiaries of the Deceased's estate. We would charge for the additional work required on the basis of hour hourly charging rate of [£165+VAT] and would always seek to agree a further fixed price with you wherever possible.

Grant and Administration of Estate

Under our 'Grant and Administration of Estate' service we will assist you in obtaining the Grant of Probate (or the Grant of Letter of Administration where the Deceased left no Will) and we will then assist you with all aspects of the estate administration.

The exact cost will be assessed on a case by case basis and is determined largely by reference to the number and type of assets, the number of beneficiaries, the potential for dispute, and whether of not the Deceased left a Will. All of these factors have an impact on the time required to see a matter to completion.

We estimate that the majority of cases of this type can be completed with between 4 and 25 hours worth of work (charge at our hourly rate of £165+VAT), meaning that on that basis the proce applicable would be in the region of between $650+VAT and £4,000+VAT.

We will also have reference to the overall value of the estate and may make an additional charge of 1% of the value (reduced to 0.5% for the value of the Deceased's residential property).

The amount of work required and the value will differ on a case by case basis. Please don't hesitate to contact our dedicated Probate team who will be happy to talk through our pricing structures with you. One of our Solicitors will provide you with a fixed cost in writing at the outset in the vast majority of cases.

Grant and Administration of Estate including Payment of IHT

Under our 'Grant and Administration of Estate including payment of IHT' service we will assist you in obtaining the Grant of Probate (or the Grant of Letters of Administration where the Deceased left no Will), and will then assist you with all aspects of the estate administration including the preparation of and submisson of the inland revenue IHT account and the payment of any IHT due.

As per the above, the exact cost will be assesed on a case by case basis with reference again to the number and type of assets, the number of beneficiaries, the potential for dispute, and whether or not the Deceased left a Will because all of these factors have an impact on the time required to see the matter to completion

We estimate that the majority of cases of this type can be completed with between 4 and 40 hours worth of work (charge at our hourly rate of £165+VAT), meaning that on that basis the price applicable would be in the region of between £950+VAT and £6,500+VAT.

The amount of work required and the value will differ on a case by case basis. Please don't hesitate to contact our dedicated Probate team who will be happy to talk through our pricing structures with you. One of our Solicitors will provide you with a fixed cost in writing at the outset in the vast majority of cases.

In all cases, the following disbursements will be payable:-

Probate Court Fee - £150.50 (plus an additional 50p for each additional Court copy of the Grant required)

Swear Fee - £5 (per person)(plus an additional £2 if there are any exhibits to the sworn document, such as the Will)

In some cases, additional disbursement payments are required. One example of this might be fees payable to the Land Registry if we are required to check the Deceased's ownership in a property. We will always inform you if this is to be the case prior to incurring any additional payment on your behalf

Please note that the prices indicated above are not inclusive of the sale or other transfer of the Deceased's property (whether residential or commercial). We will be happy to provide you with a fixed fee quotation in this respect where appropriate.

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