Probate applications go online

HM Courts & Tribunals (HMCTS) has rolled out its online probate application process, cutting out the need for executors to travel to a regional probate office. But probate fees are rising!

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Applying for probate? Get started online…

By Mark Grantham –  26th January 2019

Until recently, executors dealing with a deceased estate would need to visit a probate registry or solicitors office to swear an oath in person. But thanks to the launch of HM Courts & Tribunals Service’s (HMCTS) online probate application system, this can now be done online.

The online probate application service is already proving to be a success. HMCTS says the service has been trialled “by invitation” and 93% of the people who have used it said they were satisfied. A significant improvement compared to the experience of visiting a local probate registry, where visitors complain of long waiting times and poor customer service. Reviews of the London Probate Office provide an insight into the experience of some visitors.

You can use the online probate service if the following criteria has been met:

  • You are an executor of the will
  • You have the original will
  • You have the original death certificate or an interim death certificate from the coroner
  • You have already reported the estate’s value

And as with any probate application, you’ll need to provide the following supporting documents:

  • The original copy of the will and two photocopies
  • The death certificate
  • Completed inheritance tax forms and information
  • Any other related documents, for example, a renunciation form if someone has declined to act as executor

To use the online probate service follow the link below and go to the section titled apply for probate online:
https://www.gov.uk/wills-probate-inheritance/applying-for-a-grant-of-representation

And if you need more help phone HMRC on 0300 123 1072. The helpline is open 9-5, Monday to Friday.

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