Administration of Estates

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Understanding Probate: An Overview

Probate is referred to the legal process involved in handling and administering the assets of a deceased individual in England and Wales.
The primary purpose of probate is to establish the validity of a Will, if one exists, and determine who is authorised to administer the estate
If there is a Will then the Executor(s) named in the Will has(have) the authority and will need to apply for a Grant of Probate to administer the estate in accordance with the Will.
If there is no Will then the next of kin will apply for the Letters of Administration to administer the estate in accordance with the intestacy rules.
The grant of probate and letters of administration are both legal documents that give power to the individual(s) to administer the estate of the deceased and deal with the bank accounts, settle any debts or sell assets and deal with any tax liabilities.
In order to obtain the relevant document an application has to be made and a fee paid to the Probate Registry.
The amount it costs to deal with probate can vary according to the value and complexity of the estate.

Why Hire Mikhael Law for Estate Administration

Losing someone close is a challenging time, and administering their estate can become overwhelming. Hiring experienced solicitors can lighten the load and help with legal and financial requirements. Administering an estate can often be complex, and at Mikhael Law, we can provide personal service and invaluable support. We will handle tasks like contacting banks and institutions, notifying beneficiaries, and dealing with any complex issues such as trusts and taxes to make things easier and less stressful for you. We understand what the obligations are under the Will, intestacy rules, and tax rules. We can handle tax forms, liaise with HMRC in respect of tax relief/allowances, deal with Inheritance Tax/Capital Gains, and maintain detailed estate accounts. Handling probate yourself is challenging and takes a considerable amount of time to deal with. Mistakes can have legal and financial consequences. Hiring solicitors reduces the risk for the executor or administrator and can ensure that the beneficiaries receive their entitlements. Our complete probate service takes full responsibility for estate administration on your behalf and gives you peace of mind. This includes:-
  • Applying for the Grant
  • Dealing with the Tax Liabilities
  • Collecting and Dealing with the Assets
  • Distributing the Assets according to Will/Intestacy
  • Dealing with the Property
  • Settling any debts from the estate funds

Probate Cost

We can offer a fixed fee quote which will depend upon how big the estate is and how many beneficiaries there are or how complex it is.
For complicated estates, the fee is charged on an hourly rate for the amount of work we do and a small percentage of the value of the estate. We will aim to keep the fees as fair as possible.


If your loved one has died without making a valid Will, then the distribution of their assets and estate is governed by the rules of intestacy. These rules determine how family members entitled to benefit from the estate will inherit.
The rules of intestacy establish a list of individuals who are entitled to share in the estate and in what order. Here are the main categories in order of priority:

  • Spouse or civil partner
  • Children
  • Grandchildren/great-grandchildren
  • Parents
  • Siblings
  • Grandparents
  • Aunts and uncles
  • Half-aunts and half-uncles

The purpose of the Rules of Intestacy is to ensure that the closest relatives of the deceased receive their rightful inheritance. Unmarried partners and step-children are not included in the list and therefore unable to receive a share of the estate.
In order to administer the estate Letters of Administration has to be applied for. The process of administering the estate is quite a lengthy process and can be complicated. At Mikhael Law we take a practical and sensible approach in dealing with these matters, especially at such a sensitive period to help you to save time and money.

Post Death Variations

Understanding Deed of Variation: What is it?

A Deed of Variation is legal document that allows beneficiaries to modify the inheritance of an estate. It can be made by those entitled to inherit either under the Will or under the Intestacy rules.

Why would you consider changing someone's Will after their death?

There are various reasons why you might want to alter someone’s will after their death, including:

  • Outdated Will: If the will was drafted a long time ago and doesn’t include recently born children or grandchildren.
  • Change the distribution of the share of the estate so someone who missed out can benefit or increase the share of someone who can inherit.
  • To save tax by redistributing in a tax-efficient way.
  • To deal with any uncertainty over the Will
  • To help create a fairer distribution among all beneficiaries in the family.

The specific motivations for wanting to modify someone’s will vary depending on your unique circumstances and family situation.
The Deed has to be signed by everyone affected by the changes.