The Government confirmed today that the plans to increase probate fees have been scrapped ahead of the general election in June 2017.
The current Probate fee for all estates above £5000 is £155. Instead of a set price, the Government was planning to introduce a tiered fee structure that calculated the Probate fee based on the value of the estate (the highest fee required being £20,000).
The proposals had faced great opposition from the beginning due to the effect they would have had on bereaved families. Not only was the proposed fee increase extortionate, the fee was required at the time of application which would have placed a huge burden on asset-rich, cash-poor families.
A spokesman for the Ministry of Justice has now confirmed that ‘the statutory instrument on probate fees won’t have time to complete its passage through Parliament so it will be a matter for the new Government’. Whether or not the proposals will go ahead following the election has yet to be confirmed.
We will be monitoring the changes and providing further updates, but if you would like further information or advice in respect of these matters, please contact Kristina Dunne on 01494 478628 or firstname.lastname@example.org
“A Freedom of Information request to the MoJ found that the department could not state the average cost to the Government of processing probate applications – let alone that it increased with the size of estate.”