The UK Probate Service
When someone dies, it is left for somebody to deal with the estate. This includes dividing up what people are entitled to along with paying any outstanding debts and collecting in all monies owed. Probate is the authority of the court given to a designated person to carry out the administration of a person's estate.
What is Probate & The Probate Service?
The document which is issued by the courts is called the grant of representation and it is required by the asset holders to show proof that the correct people have the probate service's authority to be the administrator of the deceased's assets.
Where there is no dispute regarding the entitlement of the estate or the validity of the will itself, the probate service will deal with the grant of representation which is either known as the letters of administration or the probate.
The probate is when the deceased has left a will and the executor (the person who is in charge of executing the will) is acting upon instructions. The letters of administration is when a person has left a will but there has been no executor acting. It could also be the case that there is a letter of administration where no valid will is in place. Personal representatives will then be administered to the deceased's assets and estate.
How Should You Apply For A Probate?
Around 7 out of 10 probate applications are made through a solicitor and the charges will always vary from situation to situation. No two estates are ever the same so the cost will vary. When processing the application, the solicitor will meet with the client and gather all necessary information.
The paperwork will then be formally collated and the client is required to swear the oath in front of a separate, independent commissioner.. Your solicitor will then send the papers to the probate registry for processing with the original will, fees and any tax accounts. The forms will then be examined and the grant of representation is issued as soon as the application has been accepted. This will then be sent to the solicitor who is dealing with the case..
Risks and Scams
As always, ensure you go through a proper recognised and qualified solicitor as there are many scams in operation, especially on the internet. Typically these will ask for administration fees up front before sending the documents which will release the funds. You should never make any payments where people are asking for money up front in this manner. Always be safe rather than sorry!