Inheritance and probate - the importance of speed


If you have been left inheritance, probate can delay the time it takes for the money to reach you. If you are the executor of the estate it is often beneficial for you to act swiftly.

The first thing you should do is to register the death and get certified copies of the death certificate. Next you need to get your solicitor to check the validity of the will and to value assets and liabilities. Before you can get your inheritance, probate must be granted and to get probate, inheritance tax must be paid.

Inheritance tax amounts to 40% of the estate over a certain threshold. The fact that this must be paid before probate is obtained has been problematic, as most executors wish to pay the tax out of the money they receive in inheritance.

In order to combat this problem most banks will provide a short-term loan and will make the cheque out directly to HM Revenue & Customs.

Problems with the will

Getting the grant of probate can take a long time, particularly when there is no will. If you wish beneficiaries of your will to have a relatively easy time getting the grant of probate, you must make the terms of your will absolutely clear. In particular, you must make it clear who the executors of your estate are.

In order to ensure your will is clear and has legal effect, you should instruct a specialist wills and probate solicitor who can help you to properly prepare your will.  

If you would like to obtain legal advice on inheritance, probate, or any related issue, Contact Law can put you in touch with a local specialist inheritance solicitor free of charge. Call us on 0800 1777 162 or complete the web-form above.

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