Private client practitioners have welcomed the lapse of a motion to increase probate fees following the recent suspension of parliament. The fees, which are currently set at £155 for solicitors and £215 for personal applicants, would have risen on a sliding scale up to £6,000 depending on the value of the estate.
The motion to approve the fee hike was set for a vote in parliament, however following the suspension, the motion has now fallen away. Simon Davis, the Law Society president, has commented ;
”It is inherently unfair to expect the bereaved to fund other parts of the courts and tribunal service, particularly in circumstances where they have no other option but to apply for probate. Should the order be reintroduced, we will continue to campaign against its introduction. This is a tax on grief’ (lawgazette.co.uk)
Thee fee increase was seen by the profession as a ‘back door’ tax, once again penalising those who have accumulated any kind of wealth during their lifetime. We hope that the significant opposition to the motion by the legal profession, will deter the government from re-introducing the order any time in the future.
If you have any concerns about probate, please contact our private client solicitor Jennifer Wilkinson.