Probate Solicitors in Tonbridge

Following the passing away of an individual, there will usually be many areas of their life that need to be assessed and arranged moving forward, however this can only commence once a grant of probate has been allocated to the responsible party as outlined in the will of the deceased, or via the channels of intestacy should no record of a will be found.

Applying directly to the Probate Registry is in practice a simple process, however there are strict rules and regulations in place to ensure that the appropriate parties are granted the power over the probate. Any mistakes, inaccuracies, or suspected unreliability within the content of the application will incur delays in the process.

Therefore, it is most advantageous to seek the support of a solicitor who is an expert in the field of wills and probate to help with your application and any situations that may transpire further down the line.

At Bailey & Cogger solicitors in Tonbridge we have a team of probate lawyers within our Private Client departments who can assist with the entire process.

Book a free consultation with our probate solicitors in Tonbridge

For a free 30-minute consultation with our experienced, friendly probate solicitors, please call us on 01732 353305 or use our simple contact form and we will get back to your quickly.

Bailey & Cogger Solicitors is now incorporated by Hatten Wyatt, meaning you can also access our probate law expertise through local offices in Chatham, Gravesend, Maidstone and Tenterden.

We can also offer meetings by Skype for clients who have to travel extensively or who now live abroad. In exceptional circumstances, home visits can also be arranged.

How our probate solicitors can help you

Our probate solicitors in Tonbridge can:

  • advise you on whether a grant of probate is required
  • complete and lodge the application on your behalf
  • deal with any queries that are raised by the Probate Registry
  • lodge a notice preventing a grant of probate being issued until any disagreements have been resolved
  • ensure any inheritance tax is paid or deferred
  • help administer your loved one’s estate after the grant has been made to ensure all liabilities are settled and everyone receives their inheritance
  • advise on circumstances where it might be appropriate to vary the will or the rules of intestacy to make provision for other relatives or to save tax

Common questions about probate & estate administration

How do you start probate?

If there is a will, one of the executors named in the will must apply to the local Probate Registry for a Grant of Probate. This will give them the legal right to administer the deceased’s estate.

If there is no will, the person wishing to administer the estate will need to apply for Letters of Administration granting them equivalent rights to a Grant of Probate.

How long does probate take?

This will entirely depend on the circumstances, including the value and complexity of the estate, as well as any specific matters than need to be dealt with, including selling property and resolving inheritance disputes.

For straightforward estates, probate can often be completed in around 6 months. However, where there are more complex issues to deal with, it can sometimes take years.

Is probate always required?

Probate will almost always be required, however there are some circumstances where assets can be transferred directly to the beneficiaries without probate.

This is more likely to be the case if the estate is worth less than £5,000 and/or the deceased’s assets are held jointly with another who has the automatic right to inherit.

What does the executor of an estate do?

The Executor of a will or administrator of an estate must complete various tasks, including:

  • Applying for Grant of Probate/Letters of Administration
  • Identifying and gathering the assets of the estate
  • Valuing the estate
  • Paying any Inheritance Tax owed on the estate
  • Paying and debts owed by the deceased
  • Paying any legal fees and other necessary costs
  • Distributing the assets from the estate to the beneficiaries
  • Preparing estate accounts

Can you stop probate?

Yes, you can stop Grant of Probate by applying for a caveat at your local Probate Registry. This prevents probate being granted for 6 months unless you choose to have the caveat withdrawn sooner or the Executor/administrator of the estate successfully challenges the caveat.

You can extend a caveat as many times as you like, meaning probate can effectively be held up indefinitely as long as you have a valid reason for doing so.

Can you have the executor of an estate removed?

Should you believe that the executor or administrator of an estate is acting improperly, you can potentially have them removed and replaced by applying to a court. However, in most cases, concerns over the administration of an estate can be resolved without legal action through negotiation and other non-confrontational alternatives.

What happens if there is no will?

If the deceased failed to leave a valid will, then their estate will be dealt with under the rules of intestacy. Who inherits under intestacy rules will depend on the circumstances, including the value of the estate and what living relatives the deceased has.

In general, intestacy rules favour living spouses and civil partners of the deceased, then their children, then other living close relatives.

You can use the government’s intestacy tool to see who stands to inherit if someone dies without a will.

Our probate pricing

Free initial appointment

We offer a free initial 30-minute appointment to discuss your requirements.  After that we can agree funding arrangements to suit your budget. 

Fixed fee probate services

Some parts of the probate and estate administration process can be handled on a fixed fee basis, depending on the circumstances. This gives you certainty over the costs involved.

Hourly rates for probate & estate administration

Where ongoing support is needed for probate and estate administration, we will work according to an hourly rate based on the level of expertise required to deal effectively with your needs.

Why choose Bailey & Cogger Solicitors for probate and estate administration?

Our Private Client team is headed by Silviya Maclean, a highly experienced solicitor and fully qualified member of the Society of Trusts and Estate Practitioners (STEP), the worldwide professional association for expert practitioners in inheritance and succession planning.

We have offices in TonbridgeMaidstoneGravesendChatham and Tenterden where we can meet you to discuss your requirements.

Alongside our probate and estate administration experience, we can also offer the services of our Conveyancing Quality Scheme (CQS) accredited Residential Property team. They can assist with any property issues involved with administering an estate, such selling property and transfer of ownership.

Key contacts

Jonathan Schoop

Book a free consultation with our probate solicitors in Tonbridge

For a free 30-minute consultation with our experienced, friendly probate solicitors, please call us on 01732 353305 or use our simple contact form and we will get back to your quickly.

Bailey & Cogger Solicitors is now incorporated by Hatten Wyatt, meaning you can also access our probate law expertise through local offices in Chatham, Gravesend, Maidstone and Tenterden.

We can also offer meetings by Skype for clients who have to travel extensively or who now live abroad. In exceptional circumstances, home visits can also be arranged.