Probate Solicitors – A Timeline

document for probate of willA probate solicitors in Portsmouth usually begins to work with clients directly after someone passes away. This is because probate involves all the administration and division of assets that occurs after this event.

People use a probate solicitors in Portsmouth, like Andrew & Andrew, to help ensure that all of their legal obligations are met and to help administer large or complex estates.

In advance

Everyone should consider making a will, even if they think that their estate is small or that the people they love will inherit anyway. It is the best way of making things legally clear for people after someone has died. Many solicitors offer a will writing service to guide people through the process. It is possible to write a will without a solicitor, but it may not have the full force of the law if it is drawn up incorrectly.

In the first few days

The first thing that usually needs to happen is that the executor needs to obtain a grant of probate. This is the document that allows them to act on the deceased’s behalf when dealing with any institutions like a bank or HMRC. A probate solicitors in Portsmouth can help them do this. Once this document is obtained, the estate needs to be assessed to check the value of assets and the amount of any debt. Funeral costs may also need to be provided for and all of the beneficiaries located and notified.

In the following weeks

Once all the required information is gathered, the first obligation of the estate is to settle debts and pay any inheritance tax. The latter may be due on current assets, or any that have been liquidated prior to the death but within a certain time period. A probate solicitors can advise on the latest guidelines and laws.

Whatever remains in the estate can then be divided according to the deceased’s wishes as long as no one has decided to contest the will. There are more complex situations, such as investments that cannot be surrendered or trusts for children who are provided for but who aren’t the right age yet. All of these can be dealt with by an experienced probate solicitors.

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