Bereaved families facing exorbitant increase in probate fees in May 2017

Described in the press as a new tax on bereaved families the government has decided to go ahead with its plans to substantially increase probate fees.

Described in the press as a new tax on bereaved families the government has decided to go ahead with its plans to substantially increase probate fees. Despite as little as 2% of industry experts consulted supporting the change, this will mean a rise from a flat fee of £155 for estates of more than £5000 where the grant is applied for by a solicitor or £215 if applied for by an individual, to a banded structure. The new fees will apply to all estates over £50,000 and range from £1000 for estates over £300,000 up to a top fee of £20,000 for estates over £2m. Probate fees previously collected have been used to fund the probate registry services, but after the planned increase the government has advised that most of the excess fees collected will be used to contribute to reducing the deficit in the economy and providing support for the running of other courts and tribunals.