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Probate fees had been due to rise from £155 (solicitor application) or £215 (personal application) to up to £20,000 for some estates in England and Wales in May 2017 with estates valued at under £5,000 being exempt. However, the proposal was scrapped ahead of the 2017 general elections.
The plans for the increase in fees have now reared its ugly head again!
Although not as substantial as previously proposed, grieving families could still be subject to paying up to £6,000 in probate fees. From April 2019, the fees will be as follows:
|Value of Estate||New Fee|
|£0 - £50,000||Nil|
|£50,001 - £300,000||£250|
|£300,001 - £500,000||£750|
|£500,001 - £1,000,000||£2,500|
|£1,000,001 - £1,600,000||£4,000|
|£1,600,001 - £2,000,000||£5,000|
It is estimated that one in five families who will have to pay probate fees will be paying £2,500 or more. In most cases where a deceased owns a property, it will be necessary to apply for probate and the family will need to find the money in advance which could be problematic if the deceased was cash poor.