Probate fees are to be changed

New probate fees to affect many estates

The current fees are £215 for individual applications and £155 via a solicitor, with nothing payable if the estate value is up to £5,000. Under the new banding, there is a maximum effective charge for probate of 0.5% of the estate, which is triggered at £50,000 (a £250 fee) and £500,000 (a £2,500 fee). 

Value of estateOld ProposalNew Legislation
Up to £50,000 or exempt from requiring a grant of probateNilNil
£50,001 - £300,000£300£250
£300,001 - £500,000£1,000£750
£500,001 - £1,000,000£4,000£2,500
£1,000,000 - £1,600,000£8,000£4,000
£1,600,001 - £2,000,000£12,000£5,000
Over £2,000,000£20,000£6,000

The new fees are currently scheduled to come into effect 21 days after the legislation is passed, and there is very little that can be done to mitigate the impact. They are payable even if the estate passes with no IHT liability, as is usually the case on the first death of a married couple or civil partners, or if the value of the estate is covered by the available nil rate and residence nil rate bands. 

There are still opportunities to save IHT with careful planning and, as the Budget made no significant changes, there remains a window of opportunity before any reforms are introduced.

If you would like help updating your estate plans ahead of the review publication please get in touch.

The value of tax reliefs depends on your individual circumstances. 

Tax laws can change. 

The Financial Conduct Authority does not regulate tax or trust advice.