Steps surrounding probate from our probate solicitors


When it comes to handling the death of someone close to you or a loved one, it is never going to be easy.

And, when it comes to the legal process surrounding the death of someone who passed suddenly or without a will, it can be overwhelming to navigate the probate process.

Luckily, at Andrew & Andrew, our team of probate solicitors Portsmouth can help. We have over 60 years of experience helping our community cope with everything from divorce to the selling of homes and will always aim to do so with a friendly and supportive approach.

So, back to the point at hand; what is the probate process in the UK? When might you need it and how can our probate solicitors Portsmouth help you through it?

What is probate?

In simple terms, probate is the process of dealing with the property and assets of someone who has passed away. It is often required if the estate of the person who has passed was complex (e.g. if they had properties overseas or more than £5,000 in their savings) or if the person who passed did not leave a will.

If you are not sure whether you need to apply for probate, then contact our probate solicitors Portsmouth for more information.

Probate timeline

Probate can appear as a daunting prospect, and whether you have been named as an executor or are an administrator of a will, it is important to understand what each stage of probate involves.

Step 1

When your loved one has passed, aside from making funeral arrangements, you will need to register their death with the UK authorities within 5 days. You will need to preserve their estate by ensuring that their assets are maintained and secured (this includes paying creditors) and, if the deceased was a settlor in any trusts, that their trustees are informed of their passing.

Step 2

Next, the estate needs to be valued.

If the estate is worth less than £5,000 at this stage, then the following steps do not apply.

To obtain an accurate estimate of how much the estate is worth, you will need to contact HM Revenues and Customs for an assessment.

Step 3

If the deceased has assets worth more than £325,000, then you will need to pay an inheritance tax.

Our team can help with this and will ensure that, under UK Law, any due inheritance tax is paid within the first 6 months following your loved one’s passing. We can also ensure that any inheritance tax that is owed is paid at a rate that is affordable to you.

Step 4

This stage involves applying for the grant of probate.

This allows you to legally manage the estate of the deceased and will ensure that you are legally allowed to distribute any assets to the beneficiaries that are named in the will.

Step 5

Once the grant of probate is approved, you are legally obliged to pay off debts and taxes before distributing the rest of the assets to those named as beneficiaries in the will.