A compassionate approach to helping you wind up a loved one’s estate.
Looking for expert executry and probate solicitors? At Neil Kilcoyne & Co we have a wealth of knowledge and years of experience in dealing with probate (also known as confirmation) and executorship, so we can advise and support you in dealing with the estate of a deceased person.
We can offer private probate consultation appointments over the phone, with an experienced Probate Solicitor, so that matters can be taken care of from the comfort of your home.
Whether your loved one died with or without a will we are here to help and can deal with matters on your behalf.
Read our Executry & Probate FAQs for the answers to some commonly asked questions regarding the execution of a will and the winding up of an estate:
When a person dies, anything that is owned by that person is called an estate. An estate can include money, property, shares, and possessions. If the person that died owed any money such as through a mortgage or debt, this would come out of the estate.
The estate is usually left to someone, or people in the will, which will also have instructions as to who will be responsible for dealing with the estate, also known as an Executor.
An executor is the person who ultimately is in charge of the deceased estate, this includes winding up the estate and distributing the deceased assets. The executor will usually be appointed in terms of the deceased’s will.
In order for an executor to deal with the estate, they may need to apply for a special legal authority first, called probate, or in Scotland, it is known as confirmation.
If the deceased has died without a will or the named executor is not willing to take part, then a petition to court will normally be required to appoint an executor. Read more on probate without a will.
No, even if you have been appointed as executor, you do not have to take on the role. This is something you can discuss with a solicitor, like us on how best to take forward the will. Dealing with an estate can be difficult and upsetting, so do not feel like you have to deal with it alone.
An executor must investigate the extent of the assets and liabilities in the estate and thereafter apply for Confirmation of the estate. This is a process which usually involves applying to court and on larger estates, making tax returns to HMRC.
When Confirmation has been granted by court an executor of wills duties is to in-gathers assets and pays off debts and taxes due by the estate and distributes the estate according to the deceased’s Will or the law of Scotland where there is no valid will.
Additional executor of a will duties include:
As can be seen by the duties of an executor, winding up an estate is often a complex process with many potential pitfalls. Hiring a solicitor will mean we can advise you and support you in a number of matters including:
With over 20 years of experience in dealing with complex small and large estates our team of probate solicitors are here to lead you through that process as smoothly as possible. It’s why we have become, and remain, one of the top probate solicitor firms in Scotland.
We understand that dealing with a loved one and deceased’s estate can be incredibly daunting as well as overwhelming. Our specialist solicitors have extensive experience helping clients administer the estate of their loved ones including helping with legal matters, tax, administrating and selling property and guidance and support with estate administration as a whole.
At Neil Kilcoyne, we are passionate about helping people in challenging circumstances, navigate the role as executor, and applying for confirmation and probate. We’ll take the time to understand your unique situation and offer the best probate advice you can receive, which is why we are one of the leading confirmation and probate solicitors in Scotland.
Get in touch today, to discuss how our expert probate solicitors can provide you with legal advice regarding executorship, probate, confirmation, and estate administration.
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Probate in England and Wales, or confirmation as it is also known in Scotland, is the right to handle a person’s estate (money, property & possessions) when they die.
Probate is just one part of the wider estate administration process, which is the entire process of winding up a person’s affairs after they’ve died. Probate and Confirmation are processes in which an executor(s) is granted legal title to the dead person’s assets or estate. Confirmation and probate are both attained through submitting an application to the court. In Scotland confirmation applications are lodged with the Sheriff court.
With a grant of probate in England and Wales, executors can ingather assets and distribute them to the beneficiaries of the estate. In Scotland, the process is a little different and a detailed list of the dead person’s assets must be prepared. This is known as an inventory. The court grants confirmation to the assets in the inventory.
If the deceased person’s entire estate is in Scotland, you need confirmation. If, however, they have assets spread internationally, you may need both confirmation and probate.
Probate and confirmation are very similar processes, however there are procedural differences between the two.
Key differences between probate and confirmation:
When applying for confirmation, an executor/executors must provide a full list, called an inventory or a C1 form, of all the deceased property at the time of their death. This is also known as probate property. The inventory may include any money, shares, properties, land, or possessions. In Scotland, confirmation is only possible if the inventory leasts one item of money or property.
There are two types of confirmation: small estate or large estate.
Small estates refer to an estate where the total value is £36000 or less and a large estate is anything that totals more than this value. The total value does not include the deduction of any debts. If you are dealing with a large estate, it is highly recommended to take out legal advice, with solicitors like Neil Kilcoyne.
Depending on the type of confirmation, there will be different confirmation forms to be filled out. Generally C1 is the inventory form to be filled out, and you will also need a C5 or IHT400. A solicitor will be able to advise you on the correct forms to be completed. As well as this, a solicitor can also help you with establishing and applying to pay off any debts from the estate or taxes.
The fees for applying for confirmation can depend on the size and value of the estate as well as the number of certificates you must provide to different banks and insurance companies to enable them to release the funds. There are also additional costs such as inheritance tax and the cost of hiring a solicitor. It is best to discuss the cost on an individual basis with a solicitor.
In most cases, it is usually against the law to start dealing out an estate, without a letter of confirmation.
Once confirmation has been granted, the executor will be able to bring all the assets and property together and begin the process of distributing the estate. If there is property involved, it is again wise to seek the help of a solicitor with that process.
An executor must wait at least 6 months after the deceased has died before distributing the estate, as it can take some time to establish who the deceased owed money to.
If there is a will, the executor may be able to complete distributing the estate based on what this states. However, married or civil partners and children can challenge this, with the help of a solicitor.
If there is no will, this presents a number of challenges and complex rules as to how the will is distributed. Speak to a solicitor to understand your rights and the process behind this.