Dealing with Probate
Executors appointed under a will, would usually have to obtain a grant of probate before they have authority to deal with the assets in an estate. The procedure for obtaining a grant of probate will vary depending upon the nature of the assets and their value.
If an estate is “excepted” (i.e. the value of the assets and relevant lifetime gifts is under a certain figure) then executors will need to complete a Return of Estate Information for the Inland Revenue and sign an Oath before forwarding the return, the Will and the Oath to the Probate Registry. A fee will be payable to the Probate Registry (currently £40) and a grant of probate should follow within three to four weeks. Once a grant of probate is received then the executors have authority to deal with assets within the estate and can proceed with the administration.
If the estate is not “excepted”, then the executors will need to complete a detailed Inland Revenue Account and pay any tax that may be payable on the death before forwarding the Will and Oath to the Probate Registry. There are stringent penalties imposed upon executors by the Inland Revenue if the executors fail to include in the Inland Revenue Account full details of all assets.