As an Executor or Personal Representative, dealing with Probate and an estate comes at an already difficult and sad time. It can be a time consuming responsibility. We can help you. We can look after all aspects of the administration of an estate on your behalf, that can all too often become a minefield of problems and we will liase with you throughout it all.

Based in Failsworth Manchester, our office has the benefit of free parking and disabled access. You will receive a warm welcome.

However, we also offer home visits and a free initial consultation in your own home at a time that is convenient for you.

Call now on 0800 294 306 for advice and further details or email jo-ann.mason@wesolicitors.com

Probate Services Court of Protection

Many people find themselves being in the unexpected position of becoming an executor. It is not uncommon to only become aware of the appointment after the person has passed away. Even if you do know you are an executor, generally most people do not know what it means or what a responsibility it is as it is not an everyday occurrence or  topic of conversation.

This is even more so when a person has passed away without leaving a Will and there is no guidance or wishes expressed. You are almost left in the dark and have to follow the intestacy rules. In this case you may find yourself in a position where you are an administrator of the estate or one of the people who can administer the estate.

Where do you start?

Once you have the death certificate you will need to start the task of informing everybody. This will include banks and building societies, National Savings and investments, all the utility providers, pensions, the DWP, credit card providers, mortgage lenders, the list can be endless. Then of course you will have to inform the beneficiaries and open an executor’s bank account.

It can be a time consuming task and this is just the beginning. If there is a house there will be a house clearance, house insurance, securing the house and looking after it. Is it going to be sold? Then there are personal belongings to sort out.

What can you do?

It is understandable that an executor or administrator can be overwhelmed with such a big task with so many elements to it. For this reason it is common to instruct a solicitor for assistance mainly for the legal and financial aspects. A solicitor can do as much or as little of the leg work as you like and take on the responsibility whilst you oversee the process. This can all be done for a fixed cost which is agreed upfront for the work you want them to do. You still remain in charge.

WE can help

At WE Solicitors LLP we help executors through the minefield, advise them of what to expect or what things that need to be done which they may not have thought of and make the process easier, especially at such an already difficult time. Many people we have acted for have felt relieved when they have passed the work over to us and feel confident in being able to tell the beneficiaries that everything is being done properly and can update them every step of the way.

 

If you are in the process of dealing with an estate or you have become an executor and you need some advice you can contact WE SOLICITORS LLP for a free initial consultation.

Or you can email jo-ann.mason@wesolicitors.com to request a copy of our free Report:

 

7 Things a Newly Appointed Executor Should Know Before Getting

Probate & Administering an Estate

 

Email: info@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Salford and all surrounding areas

 

 

Parliament has run out of time before the snap general election to put plans in place to drastically increase the fee payable when applying for a Grant of Probate or a Grant of Letters of Administration.

For the time being the current fee of £215 for a personal application or £155 for solicitor made applications will remain in force. However, the proposals could be reintroduced by the next government.

Many will welcome the news especially the recently bereaved. It will take the added pressure off those currently applying for a grant in having to find the additional costs of £1,000 up to £20,000. A recent consultation saw 750 responses out of 820 objected to the plan to increase fees.

What is Probate?

A Grant of Probate or Grant of Letters of Administration (when there is no Will) is required when there is assets in the estate over a certain value usually £10,000 – £20,000 and is always needed when there is a property in the estate. The Grant is a document that is issued by the Court which gives the executor or administrator the authority to deal with the assets i.e. release funds or sell a house.  Lady of Justice

Being an executor is already a huge responsibility that many seek the assistance of a solicitor to help them with the legal process. This would have been made even harder when faced with the challenge of having to find thousands of pounds for probate fees before any funds in the estate are released.

Are you an executor?

If you are in the process of dealing with an estate or you have become an executor and you need some advice you can contact WE SOLICITORS LLP for a free initial consultation.

Or you can email jo-ann.mason@wesolicitors to request a copy of our free Report:

 

7 Things a Newly Appointed Executor Should Know Before Getting

Probate & Administering an Estate

 

Email: info@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan and surrounding areas.

 

The Ministry of Justice have confirmed there will be a huge increase in the fees payable to obtain a Grant of Probate or a Grant of Letters of Administration, subject to parliamentary approval.

Currently the fee is a flat rate of £215 for personal applications and £155 for solicitor made applications. Any additional sealed copies of the Grant are now 50p but the first additional copy is set to be £10 and 50p for all copies thereafter.

The fees hike has met with much resistance. Out of 831 respondents to the MoJ’s consultation on the charges, less than 2% were in favour.

The Law Society has said: ‘It is unfair and discriminatory to expect the bereaved to fund/subsidise other parts of the court and tribunals service. Court fees are a necessary source of funding but should not be charged over and above the cost of the specific service.’

The proposed new fees will be:

Value of estate                 Proposed fee

Up to £50,000                   £0

Between £50k-£300k       £300

Between £300k-£500k     £1,000

Between £500k-£1m         £4,000

Between £1m-£1.6m       £8,000

Between £1.6m-£2m       £12,000

More than £2m               £20,000

These fees will have to be paid before the personal representative can access the funds in the estate to pay them. Many executors will have to rely on banks paying them directly to the Probate Registry from the deceased’s account (if they agree to do this), in a similar way of the current Direct Payment Scheme for inheritance tax. However some estates which may only have a property – that can’t be sold until probate has been granted – the executor will be forced to pay the fee themselves or take out a loan for the payment.

Charities have also expressed their concern that their heavily relied upon income from legacies could be severely reduced.

If you are in the process of dealing with an estate or you have become an executor and you need some advice you can contact WE SOLICITORS LLP for a free initial consultation.

Or you can email jo-ann.mason@wesolicitors to request a copy of our free Report:

7 Things a Newly Appointed Executor Should Know Before
Getting Probate & Administering an Estate

 

Email: info@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Salford and all surrounding areas

 

 

 

 

WE Solicitors recently completed a Will for a volunteer at Oldham Cancer Support Centre.

As a gesture of our support we waived our usual fee of £108. Our client then kindly decided to donate the fee to Oldham Cancer Support herself. This is a service we will gladly extend to anyone who is utilising the services they provide. We try to make the process of making a Will as easy as possible.

If you would like a make a Will then please contact Oldham Cancer Support Centre who can then refer you to us. Our office is nearby to the centre at Ivy Mill Crown Street Failsworth Manchester M35 9BG

Oldham Cancer Support Centre The Ena Hughes Centre Elllesmere Street Failsworth M35 9AD

Tel: 0161 770 8751  Email: oldhamcancersupportcentre@hotmail.co.uk

Oldham Cancer support

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We Solicitors can also help you with other issues. If you need advice about a Lasting Power of Attorney or you have been diagnosed with an industrial related illness such as mesothelioma or asbestosis then we can help.

Email: info@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Salford and all surrounding areas

 

A recent article in The Telegraph explains the amount of savings held with various banks  that will be released without the need for a Grant of Probate or a Grant of Letters of Administration. It also provides some useful information about how to get a Grant.

See article here:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/ask-a-money-expert/can-transfer-late-fathers-savings-bonds-name-avoid-probate/

If you are in the process of dealing with an estate or you have become an executor and you need some advice you can contact WE SOLICITORS LLP for a free initial consultation.

Or you can email jo-ann.mason@wesolicitors to request a copy of our free Report:

7 Things a Newly Appointed Executor Should Know Before Getting Probate & Administering an Estate

 

Email: info@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Salford and all surrounding areas

 

The National Society of Allied and Independent Funeral Directors have produced a very useful booklet which allows you to convey your wishes and consider what you can do to make the path in later life easier. You can use the booklet as a guide and to write down your wishes:

http://saif.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/SAIF218-Planning-for-later-life-20pp-Booklet-FINAL-DIGITAL.pdf

Planning for the end of your life

SAIF say:

“We all plan for every major life event – careers, marriage, family, pensions and retirement to name but a few. Why then, do so many of us fail to plan for the end of our life and leave so much either to chance or in the hands of our relatives who may not know our wishes? Why has only one third of the population made a will? It may be that we are afraid to plan for this inevitable event for fear that we may somehow speed its arrival. Planning for the end of our life allows us to record our wishes and choices at a time when we are mentally able to do so. With clarity, we can be sure about what we want and when we want it.”

  1. Make a will
  2. Record your funeral wishes
  3. Plan your future care and support
  4. Register as an organ donor
  5. Tell your loved ones your wishes

WE Solicitors says “This is a very good guide and starting point to plan for later life. All five valid points make perfect sense. It is particularly good if this is a difficult subject to raise with loved ones. You can complete the booklet and just let your family know that you have done it and where to find it should it  ever be needed.  This would compliment a Will and a Lasting Power of Attorney very well.”

It may seem a minefield at first but with the right advice it is likely to be easier than you think to cover these issues.

To speak to an experienced and understanding solicitor contact WE SOLICITORS LLP. We offer home visits and appointments to suit you. Some of the process can be done my email or telephone. We work around you.

Email: info@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Salford and all surrounding areas

 

Solicitors for the Elderly have compiled a report following a study:

The Real Cost of DIY LPAs’: What are the risks of using a DIY kit

and why should you seek expert advice?

 This report outlines the results of our study into the various methods of creating an LPA. During the study, we compared participants’ experiences of using a DIY method (either an off-the-shelf kit or the OPG online service) with their experiences of using a specialist solicitor. The study also assessed the legal robustness of the LPAs created using a DIY approach.

READ THE FULL REPORT HERE:

http://www.sfe.legal/pdfs/the-hidden-cost-of-diy-lpas.pdf

A Participant in the study says:

“I don’t think that it was possible to give these questions enough thought when filling in a form online, and I had serious concerns about making any decisions without discussing them with a solicitor first.”

Solicitors for the Elderly comment: “The participants in our study all agreed that they would not feel comfortable submitting an application made using a DIY method without first discussing it with a solicitor. After receiving a consultation with a specialist solicitor, all participants said they felt more confident about their ability to make informed and appropriate choices, and most of them made significant changes to the decisions expressed in their LPAs.”

“The perceived benefit of using a ‘DIY’ method over using a solicitor is primarily financial, as the DIY methods are cheaper in the short-term. However, SFE is concerned that by encouraging people to create ‘bargain-bucket’ LPAs without taking specialist legal advice, the OPG is potentially exposing them to unacceptable levels of risk and in doing so may be compromising its ability to safeguard those who are most vulnerable.”

 

Jo-Ann Mason of We solicitors says: “It may appear that making an LPA online is the easiest and cheapest option but it is not always the best option. It is a legal document giving significant power to another and should not be done without careful consideration and advice. A solicitor can make the whole process less stressful and much easier to understand. I visit my clients in their own homes and try to make the experience as comfortable as possible when making such decisions.”

If you would like further information on Lasting Powers of Attorney then Call WE Solicitors today and speak to our expert.

Email: jo-ann.mason@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Leigh Salford and all surrounding areas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At WE Solicitors, Jo-Ann Mason has met with two clients in the last week who live with their partners. Without a Will their wishes would NOT be met. The outcome would have been far different for their long term partners:

Mr A owns his owns his own house and recently moved in with his partner Ms V. she owns her own house. Whilst they are living together Mr A wanted to ensure his house went to his two sons (from his previous marriage) but that anything else he had was to go to Ms V as she was looking after him and providing his care.  He appointed his brother as an executor as he had some experience of dealing with their parent’s estates and felt he would be best to do that.

Without a Will the law says Mr A’s estate would go to his nearest blood relatives. This would be his two sons and they would be appointed as the administrators. They would not have the authority to deal with anything until they got a grant of Letters of Administration. Ms V would be entitled to absolutely nothing.

Mr C lives with his long term partner. They never got round to getting married. Mr C is terminally ill. They don’t have a lot in the way of assets but Mr C wants to make sure that whatever he does has goes to his partner Miss K. Mr C has three children. He has not seen them for years. They are a very private couple and they were particularly concerned that the children were not to come to the house and take belongings or try to take over. Mr C left everything he has to Miss K in his Will. He also did a Letter of Wishes to explain his intentions regarding his children and also his funeral wishes.

Without a Will the law says everything would have gone to his three children with whom he no longer has contact and he was very clear he did not want them involved in any aspect after he passed away. They would be entitled to his estate and his personal belongings and bank accounts would belong to his children. This is not what he wants and it is not the sort of situation he wants to leave his partner in when he has gone and she is left to deal with this on her own. He has made a Will to ensure this does not happen.

Making A Will ensures your wishes are in place. Don’t leave your partner in a very vulnerable position at an already extremely difficult time. You can ensure all your family are looked after. There are various options available that you may not be aware of to ensure you have protected your partner and your children.

If you would like further information on any of these issues and would like some free initial advice then Call WE Solicitors today and speak to our expert.

Email: jo-ann.mason@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Leigh Salford and all surrounding areas

 

Business man working at office with laptop and documents on his desk consultant lawyer concept

“Solicitors, not accountants, are best at delivering uncontested probate”

Here, Sally Harlow, a solicitor specialising in probate at law firm Boodle Hatfield responds, by saying there is a very good reason why lawyers remain the first choice for probate work:

LAWYERS HAVE BEEN at the heart of probate work for centuries.  It is not just because they may have drafted and stored a will, but because even the simplest estate may require additional legal documentation to be drafted and ongoing legal advice.  Probate is much more than a financial exercise.

For more see:

https://www.accountancyage.com/2016/11/09/solicitors-not-accountants-are-best-at-delivering-uncontested-probate/

WE Solicitors says: There is far more to probate and administering an estate than collecting in assets and distributing them. . You are dealing with a person’s life, with a person’s family and understanding their background. It is usually like unravelling a story and no two are the same. However, there are aspects of an estate that probate solicitors are all too familiar with and have vast experience of . Things like handling family conflicts or acting as a go between, understanding that grief and money rarely mix and knowing how to keep the estate moving as peacefully as possible. These things are not in text books or legislation and would be particularly difficult for any new comers to the probate market to instantly pick up.  Solicitors gain their skills from experience and from the knowledge of expert solicitors before them.

Dealing with an estate whether complex or straightforward is a skill which is often taken on lightly. To a family member appointed as an executor it can be a daunting task and it is no doubt time consuming. That is why we are here to help and assist in the process as much or as little as the executor would like.

We do all this n a fixed fee so there are no unexpected costs for the estate. Our goal is always to give straightforward legal advice.

If you are an executor or you would like advice on dealing with an estate please contact us for an initial chat to point you in the right direction.

If you would like a copy of our report below on probate please email:

jo-ann.mason@wesolicitors.com to request a free copy.

 7 things a newly appointed executor should know before

getting probate and administering an estate

Email: info@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Salford and all surrounding areas

 

More than half of all adults in the UK have not made a Will. If you have children it is especially important to have a Will in place. Every parent wants their child to be safely looked after and protected. To think of not being here to look after your children is far from a pleasant thought. But it is better to be safe in the knowledge that if the worst happens you have done what you can to protect them and ensure they are looked after rather than leaving it to chance.

You can put your wishes in place for their future. This cannot be done without a Will.

The points to consider include:

  • Who would be their guardian?
  • What age would they inherit 18, 21, 25 or older ?
  • Who would you appoint as Trustees to look after their inheritance until they get to the specific age?
  • Could they have access to funds prior to the age i.e. for education or maintenance?
  • What if you have step children or children from a first and second marriage?
  • Would your partner / spouse want something different?
  • What if you own a property?
  • Where would your children live?

These are not questions to be left unanswered no matter how hard they are to think about. Once a Will is on place then you would not have to think about them.

It may seem a minefield at first but with the right advice it is likely to be easier than you think to cover these issues.

To speak to an experienced and understanding solicitor contact WE SOLICITORS LLP. We offer home visits and appointments to suit you. Some of the process can be done my email or telephone. We work around you.

Email: info@wesolicitors.co.uk

Telephone: 0800 294 3065 / 0161 683 3191

Home visits available in Failsworth Oldham Manchester Bury Ashton under Lyne Bolton Wigan Salford and all surrounding areas

 

 

Home visits to Failsworth, Oldham, Bolton, Bury, Trafford, Sale, Hyde, Dunkenfield, Stockport, Wigan and Altrincham and further a field by arrangement