What is Probate?▾
Probate is the term used in England and Wales for applying
for the right to deal with the estate of a deceased. Different terms are used depending on whether or not the person in question left
a will. Once a probate is granted, the individual is legally allowed to administer the estate.
What is a contentious probate?▾
Contentious probate, is when there is a disagreement over
how someone’s estate should have been distributed, following their death. Disputes such as these often emerge where a party may feel
that they did not receive what they deserved or were promised. Sometimes people have concerns about the way in which a will was drawn,
or its validity.
Dhikr Accountants is not authorised to deal with contentious probate.
What if a non-contentious probate becomes contentious?▾
Dhikr Accountants will monitor all probate cases on an
ongoing basis. Where a previously non-contentious case become contentious, we will stop dealing with your case and will help you
instruct a solicitor to deal with the dispute.
What do I do when someone dies?▾
Immediate steps in the event of a death page for
information on what you should do when someone dies.
How long does it take to get money from a Will after someone dies?▾
This can vary according to the complexity of the estate. Dhikr Accountants
will aim to make the process as quick and efficient as possible. An average case can take anything between 3 and 6 months.
What happens if I am owed money by someone who has died?▾
Personal debts can be repaid from the estate of the deceased if the loan can
be evidenced, e.g. commercial signed terms. Business debts are more complicated and you should discuss this with the partner for further clarity.
What are the legal requirements to ensure that a Will is valid?▾
1. It must be made by a person who is 18 years old or over
2. It must be made voluntarily, without any pressure or influence from another party
3. It must be made by a person who is of sound mind, this means the testator
is aware of the document, is familiar with the assets that fall within the will, and is familiar with those that will benefit from the inheritance
4. We advise that all wills are dated
As a personal representative am I personally liable?▾
Personal representatives have a fiduciary duty to the beneficiary of the estate, and
owe a duty of care to the beneficiaries. They are therefore personally liable for any loss incurred as a result of a breach of their duty in this role. This may
arise from misappropriating assets from the estate for their own use, maladministration or from negligence.
A decision to act as a personal representative should not be taken lightly.
I’m one of the beneficiaries, can I speak to you about the estate▾
We are appointed by the personal representatives and not the beneficiaries or the
family of the deceased. We are unable to discuss sensitive information with anyone other than the personal representatives. Personal representatives must also remember
that their duty of care is to the estate and not to particular beneficiaries.
Will the estate definitely incur inheritance tax?▾
This will depend on each estates circumstances, for example if an estate includes a
trading company that has traded for a long time, it will likely benefit from business property relief (BPR) and therefore no inheritance tax will be paid on the business,
however other parts of the estate may still incur inheritance tax. Dhikr Accountants have knowledge of the various tax laws and will be able to advise you of your
circumstances once we have received your case.
I have been trying to administer the estate of a loved one but struggling, can you help?▾
Although we recommend that you get in touch early on, we appreciate sometimes that
just doesn’t happen. As long as your case is not contentious, we can step in and help complete the estate administration process.
Why use a professional firm?▾
The probate process is complex and time consuming, and relies on specialist legal
and tax knowledge. Professional firms have the relevant knowledge and experience of the relevant rules, which are important in successfully administrating the estate.
The partner Imran Anjum at Dhikr Accountants has undertaken professional training and is authorised by the ICAEW to offer non-contentious probate work, and is thus best
suited to administer an estate.