Posts tagged “Probate”

Changes to the online probate service, MyHMCTS, for solicitors and other legal professionals came into effect on 19 August 2021. These changes could simplify and streamline the probate process for executors and administrators. 
 
 
A black gavel use in HM Court and Tribunal service hearings
The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has launched a consultation on its proposals to increase probate fees. 
 
The new single fee of £273 will apply to professional and non-professional applicants, regardless of the size of the estate. The MoJ says the new fee reflects the cost of providing the service and is not intended to make a profit. 
 
Currently the fees to apply for a grant of probate for an estate valued over £5,000 are £155 for professionals and £215 for individuals. Estates worth less than £5,000 don’t pay a fee. 
 
picture of a gavel representing HM Courts & Tribunals Service
The Law Society has urged people to include ‘digital assets’ such as emails, photos, social media accounts, websites and domain names, or cryptocurrencies in their Wills
 
The Law Society commissioned a survey which found that more than nine out of ten people who have a Will have not included their digital assets. 
 
Their research showed that three quarters of the 1,000 people questioned didn’t know what happened to their online presence after they die. 
Books and gavel on a white background
We’re told that waiting times for grants of probate have now been reduced to around five weeks. 
 
HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) says that the number of grants issued each week is now higher than the number of applications being received. 
 
If you apply for probate online, an option that was introduced in November last year, you should only have to wait around four weeks. If there aren’t any errors or omissions in the application, it could even be handled in a week. 
 
If you submit the paper forms instead, you should receive your grant within eight weeks. 
 
However, this is just the beginning of the process of administering an estate on behalf of a friend or family member. 
black and gold pen and Last Will and Testament
There are reports that challenges to historic Wills have increased by up to 400% this year. 
 
In some cases, challenges are being made several years after an estate has been settled. 
 
People are enquiring about the possibility of challenging the Wills of friends and family members, believing they have a claim to money or assets, although they weren’t declared at the time. 
Some of the UK’s biggest banks, building societies and insurance companies are discussing how to improve services for bereaved customers. 
 
More than 60 organisations, including major banks, intermediaries and brokers are involved in creating a new Bereavement Standard. 
butterfly and orange flower
Did you know that a caveat can be used to prevent a grant of probate? 
 
What could this mean for your friends and family? 

What is a caveat? 

A caveat is used to ask someone to suspend an action. In the case of your Will, it could be used to stop your executors obtaining a grant of probate. If you don’t have a Will, it could be used to prevent your family obtaining letters of administration. 
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