What is Probate?

Understand the process you'll need to go through when dealing with the estate of someone who has died.

Technically, 'probate' refers to getting permission to carry out the wishes within someone's will, though the term also applies to the whole process of settling someone's estate. If you're responsible for executing someone's will, there are specific rules that set out how you notify the authorities and distribute the estate.


How does probate work?

Appointing a professional can be a good idea, and Maplebrook Wills can provide that service for you. If you are dealing with a complex estate, this could be essential.

If you choose to administer the will yourself, you'll need to submit the relevant applications.

You'll then need to gather in all the deceased person's assets and distribute them to the beneficiaries. This will involve notifying banks, building societies, relevant government departments (such as the council and HMRC) of the person's death, settling up any accounts they hold, tallying up their assets and liabilities, paying off any inheritance tax that might be owed, and then distributing their assets.


Who is the executor of a will?

The person who administers probate is known as the 'executor', and is generally appointed in the deceased's will. In most cases, the executor will be a family member or friend of the deceased. But it's also possible to appoint a professional executor. Professional executors will expect to be paid from the proceeds of the estate for carrying out this duty. They normally carry out the entire probate process and receive a fee for this, too.

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