Are you sitting on a probate timebomb? Lucy Moseley from BWT Law explains all...
Did you know that since 2007, surviving spouses automatically inherit unused inheritance tax allowances? Therefore, for some, this has removed the motive for applying for a 'grant of probate' - the gathering up and distribution of the assets of the deceased.
If a surviving spouse continues to live in the same home and has access to joint bank accounts, there could be a lack of need to apply immediately for a grant of probate.
The legal industry has noticed a trend in families now having to apply for two or more grants of probate as a result. (Ref: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/tax/inheritance/probate-timebomb-not-sorting-affairs-could-leave-family-massive/).
Currently, a flat fee of £215 is charged if probate is applied for by friends and family, £155 if a solicitor completes the process.
Government plans to reform probate fees were meant to be introduced May 2017, however, after an intense backlash, these were put on hold ahead of the general election. Once in place, these new laws would mean estates less than £50,000 would pay nothing for probate but estates worth more will incur far higher fees.
Are you aware of this issue? Need more advice on how your legal matters stand if the worst was to happen and your partner was to decease? Call me now on 01372 725655
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