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Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 30009
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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My mother has recently passed away and I don't understand

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My mother has recently passed away and I don't understand probate, or how to the process started. Any help would be very much appreciated. Can it be done online?
JA: Estate laws vary by location. Where are you located?
Customer: Corsham in Wiltshire.
JA: What documents or supporting evidence do you have?
Customer: I have my mothers will and death certificate.
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I do not know what is required.
Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Posted by JustAnswer at customer's request) Hello. I would like to request the following Expert Service(s) from you: Live Phone Call.
Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Let me know if you need more information, or send me the service offer(s) so we can proceed.

Hello and thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 15 years’ experience. Please be aware that although I will endeavour to reply to you promptly, I am also in full time private practice and so I may not be available to respond immediately and it may also take me a few minutes to prepare a reply. The site will notify you as soon as I respond. I look forward to working with you to answer your question fully.

I am very sorry to read of the above and please accept my sincere condolences for your loss. I will certainly try to clarify the position for you.

may I enquire in very ballpark terms, the likely value of your mother's estate please? In particular, does it include any form of "real property" such as a house or flat?

Customer: replied 15 days ago.
She has some shares, small amount of money in a bank account and the house which has equity against it. The house is not mortgaged. Total of around £375,000, without the equity outstanding on the house.
Customer: replied 15 days ago.
I am happy to carry on with web chat. Thank you for asking though.

thank you. I agree therefore that basis you will require probate which has the purpose of my question is not all states require probate depending upon their value and make up.

The person or persons appointed as executor under a will can apply for probate. Some people choose to appoint a solicitor to assist them but providing you are prepared to spend a number of hours on the task, there is no reason you cannot deal with the matter yourself. the first thing to determine is whether there is likely to be any inheritance tax due. Based upon what you have told me above, I would not expect there would be because you can apply your mother's £325,000 tax allowance and on the basis she has left her property to you or her children ( if you have siblings) a further £175,000 allowance in respect of her main residence totalling £500,000 of inheritance tax allowance which exceeds the value of her estate from what you say.

Accordingly, the first thing to do is to value her estate. In respect of bank accounts this involves establishing the balance as at the date she passed away and in respect of other assets such as shares and property, evaluation will need to be obtained. The shares, this is simple as quoted shares can be valued either using a stockbroker or using an online historical shareprice service. The property, you are likely to need to obtain a valuation from an estate agent. You can normally do this for free if you intimate whether it is true or not that you are considering selling the property. In the circumstances agents will normally offer you a free valuation. If by contrast you asked for a probate valuation they may want to charge. As there is unlikely to be any tax due, there is no requirement to obtain more than one valuation for the purposes of completing an inheritance tax return as HMRC will not be very interested if there is no tax to.

You will need to complete an inheritance tax return which is likely to be form IHT205. You can do this online here once you have obtained all of the above valuations:

Once you have submitted the tax return and received the acknowledgement of submission, you can apply for probate which again can be done online using the following link:

Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Thank you so much for the information. I will get a valuation on the property sorted out then complete an inheritance tax return form and then apply for probate.
Thank you for all your help I will spend a day going through everything.
Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Thank you, ***** ***** have to go to work now.

I'm glad the above is of some assistance but if you have any further questions, please revert to me.

Thank you again for visiting JustAnswer and see you again in the future I hope.

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