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What does probate cost?

Our Expertise

Harrison Drury have a highly experienced Private Client team operating across five offices with collective experience of over 110 years delivering specialist legal advice in this area. This includes top level tax, incapacity and dispute specialists skilled in dealing with national and international issues. Members of our team sit on HMRC and STEP expert panels ensuring that you have the best advice possible in relation to probate and ongoing succession issues. Our team include members of the Society of Trust and Estates Practitioners, Private Client Section, Court of Protection Practitioners Association, Solicitors for the Elderly and the Association of Contentious Probate Practitioners.

Administration of Estates

Applications to obtain the grant of probate including collecting and distributing the estate assets.

Our Costs

Our hourly charge out rates vary according to the fee earner undertaking the work and are as follows:

Work undertaken by: Cost per hour (exclusive of VAT)
Partner £230
Consultant £210
Associate Solicitor £185
Private Client Executive £165
Solicitor £145
Paralegal £95

You will be advised prior to us undertaking any matter on your behalf as to who will be undertaking the work, their status, their hourly charge out rate and who will be supervising their work.

The cost of dealing with probate matters depend on the individual circumstances of each case. A simple estate with a couple of assets, no property and a couple of beneficiaries will be dealt with at the lower end of the range suggested. Where the estate is more complex with multiple assets, property, multiple beneficiaries and there is a requirement to deal with lifetime gifting or claim tax reliefs the estimate will be higher.

There may be circumstances where you may be charged in line with enhanced rates. If this is the case this will be discussed with you at the outset to allow you to make an informed decision on how to proceed.

Basic Estates

The cost for us to handle the full process for a basic estate would be in the range of £3000 – £8,000 plus VAT.

This is based on the basic estate with;

  • A valid will
  • No more than one property
  • No more than 4 bank accounts
  • No further intangible assets
  • 5 beneficiaries or fewer
  • No disputes between beneficiaries
  • No inheritance tax payable – executors not required to produce a full account to HMRC
  • No claims brought against the estate



Complex Estates

Most of the estates that we deal with would fall within the complex estate’s category with estimates of between £10,000 – £80,000 plus VAT. We are happy to discuss any individual case and circumstances with you.

For example, an estate is complex if we need to deal with;


  • An intestacy (no will)
  • Multiple properties including unoccupied ones
  • Multiple bank accounts
  • Administration of overseas assets
  • Additional work in relation to a company or business
  • Additional work in relation to third party affairs

Work dealing with a court of protection deputyship

  • Winding up/administering trusts created by the will
  • Variations of the estate or tax planning
  • Work arising from lifetime gifting
  • Locating missing beneficiaries
  • Dealing with disputes or challenges to the estate


The increase in costs represents the need to use a fee earner with greater experience working over an extended time. The likely disbursements are the same as for the simple estate but will be increased where multiples are involved.



The following fees for third parties will be required additionally. We handle all third-party payments on your behalf to ensure that the matter runs smoothly.

Item Fee
Swearing of oath with Will £7.00
Probate Court Fee £150.00
Bankruptcy search £2.00 plus VAT (international price will be higher)
Advert in London Gazette/local paper £200.00
Additional copies of grant (each) £0.50
Land registry fees (per title) £3.00 (plus VAT)

Key Stages & Timescales

Our estimated cost includes all work in relation to;

  • Identifying the legally appointed executors or administrators and beneficiaries
  • Accurately identifying the type of Probate application that you will require
  • Obtaining the relevant documents required to make the application
  • Completing the Probate Application and the relevant HMRC forms
  • Draft a legal oath for you to swear
  • Making the application to the Probate Court on your behalf
  • Obtaining the Probate and securely sending copies to you
  • Collecting and distributing all assets in the estate

The likely timescales of work we currently process suggest that a simple estate should be dealt with within 9 -12 months. Most complex estates are dealt with in between 1 to 3 years. These are only guidelines as an estate can be delayed for a number of reasons and some cases can take significantly longer.

A PDF version of this information is available to download here

Our Expert Team


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