Probate is the official process for proving a person’s will after they have died. It also refers to the legal process of dealing with a person’s assets and liabilities (known as their estate) after their death, and includes cases where there is no will, or the will is not valid.
A will appoints executors, and it is those executors that are responsible for dealing with all aspects of the estate administration. If there is no will, or the will is not valid, those responsible are known as administrators and statute dictates who can apply for this role.
An executor’s responsibilities can be wide ranging and complex, such as registering the death, arranging the funeral, declaring the value of the estate, paying any taxes that fall due, applying for probate, selling and encashing the assets, and discharging any debts. The final task being to distribute the estate to the beneficiaries.
How we can help
At Fosters we routinely support executors and administrators with their responsibilities.
We offer a bespoke service tailored to suit your individual needs and appreciate that every estate is different.
We usually begin by offering an initial advice appointment to go through what is involved. From there, it is your choice to decide whether you would like our help with the estate administration and to what extent. You may simply wish to instruct us to apply for probate, or you may prefer for us to manage the entire estate administration and then update you as we go. This could extend to taking care of any unoccupied property – including insuring it, sorting through paperwork, clearing the property, and instructing estate agents to value and then sell it. These additional services may be particularly helpful if you are closely connected to the person who has died and do not feel able to be so involved, or if you are not local.
We appreciate that anyone contacting us might be going through a difficult time and so we assure you a supportive, compassionate, and friendly service.
Contentious Trusts and Probate
We also have specialists who can help you bring or defend a claim when there has been a problem or dispute with the administration of an estate.
Recognised and recommended
Our Wills, Trusts & Probate services are listed in The Legal 500 UK – with our experts recommended for their ‘professionalism, thoroughness and compassion’.
Our wills, trusts & probate team
Court of Protection Specialist
Deputy Head of Wills, Trusts & Probate