After nearly a year of debate and delays, a positive decision has finally been made regarding Probate fees. Probate is an important step to getting control over someone’s estate after they pass away. The proposal to charge Probate fees on a sliding scale instead of the current flat rates would have detrimentally affected almost 300,000 people. As these fees would not have reflected the administration costs of obtaining Probate, it led to them being referred to as a ‘Death Tax’.
The Law Society referred to the proposals as an ‘unfair way to squeeze money out of vulnerable families’. Thankfully, Justice Secretary Robert Buckland has decided that although fees are important to ensure that the courts can run effectively, the fees must be ‘fair and proportionate’. Instead of introducing a sliding fee, there will now be a wider review of court fees, which will take place imminently.
It is worth keeping in mind, however, that even though the proposal has been scrapped the costs associated with a loved one passing can build up. These often-unexpected costs are why we have started advising our clients about the importance of setting up a Probate Trust. If you want to ensure that your funeral costs, Probate costs, etc. will be covered without unnecessary financial strain on your loved ones, speak to an adviser to see if setting up a Probate Trust could be the right thing for you.
Redwood Financial is a leading Wills, Trusts & Estate Planning provider and we are dedicated to helping families to grow, protect and enjoy their wealth. With our unrivalled knowledge of Estate Planning, Lasting Powers of Attorney, Probate, Pensions, Savings & Investments, we can advise on any situation.
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