You can get part of your application fee back if you applied to register a power of attorney from 1 April 2013 to 31 March 2017.
This applies to lasting powers of attorney (LPA) and enduring powers of attorney (EPA).
You can only claim a refund if you made the power of attorney in England or Wales.
Who can claim a refund
You can make a claim if you’re:
- the ‘donor’ – the person who made the power of attorney
- an ‘attorney’ – appointed by the donor in an LPA or EPA
The refund must be paid to the donor.
You only need to make one claim per donor, even if you made more than one power of attorney.
For more details on how much you are entitled to, and how to submit a claim, please visit:
May 2017 will see a change to the fees charged when applying for a Grant of Probate in England & Wales.
Some estates may benefit from a lower charge, however, for others, a large fee will become payable in the event of the death of a loved one.
What is Probate?
If you find that you have been appointed to act as an Executor of someone’s Will, you might need to apply for a Grant of Probate. Even if there is no Will, as next of kin, you still might need to apply for Probate, but in this instance, you would be applying for Letters of Administration (the same fees apply).
A Grant of Probate is a document issued by a Probate Registry local to you, that confirms you are the appointed Executor of a Will or the next of kin of someone who has died and therefore the right person to deal with the bank accounts, shares, property and other belongings of someone who has died (the assets of the estate).
Depending upon the size and nature of the estate, you may need a Grant of Probate before you can do such things as close bank accounts or pay bills from a bank account. You will definitely need a Grant of Probate if you find you will need to sell shares or sell a property.
What will change?
The current fee payable on application for a Grant of Probate is £215 if applying personally or £155 if applying through a solicitor. Where the value of the assets in an estate is below £5,000, there is no fee payable.
If you are dealing with a Grant of Probate application from May 2017 onwards, a fee scale based on the value of the assets in an estate will be applied as follows:-
|Value of estate||Fee required|
|0 – £50,000||Nil|
|£50,001 – £300,000||£300|
|£300,001 – £500,000||£1000|
|£500,001 – £1,000,000||£4000|
|£1,000,001 – £1,600,000||£8000|
|£1,600,001 – £2,000,000||£12,000|
|£2,000,001 or more||£20,000|
For those estates with a value of £50,000 or less, no fee will be payable, so the change could be a positive one. We are advised that 58% of all estates in England & Wales will fall in to this category.
For those estates with a value of £50,001 or higher, however, the new fee could represent a 95% increase in some instances!
Why choose Johnson & Gaunt?
If you are an Executor dealing with an estate but have been delaying progressing your application for a Grant of Probate for whatever reason, now may be the time to push it through.
If you need assistance with an application for a Grant of Probate, we are a local, approachable firm, whose friendly and efficient staff can guide you through the processes involved, so why not contact us?
For more information and assistance please contact Sarah Horton in our Banbury office on 01295 759400 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Teresa Ingarfield in our Chipping Norton on 01608 643051 or email@example.com
April 2017 will see a potential increase in the inheritance tax allowance on death if you own the home you live in and have children.
For some, not much will change, but for others, large inheritance tax savings could be made, provided that your Will or intestacy correctly gifts your home to your direct decedents.
What will change?
The current inheritance tax free allowance per individual is £325,000. Married couples have an inheritance tax free allowance of £650,000.
If your death occurs on or after 6 April 2017, an additional inheritance tax free allowance could be available to your estate if you own your own home and leave it to your child or children (including a step-child, adopted child or foster child), or their children.
Over the next five years, the additional allowance per individual (doubled for married couples) will be phased in as follows:-
- £100,000 for 2017 to 2018
- £125,000 for 2018 to 2019
- £150,000 for 2019 to 2020
- £175,000 for 2020 to 2021
This allowance, however, applies to your residence only (the home you live in). If the value of your home is less than the allowance, the surplus allowance cannot be used against any other part of your estate – it is lost. The definition of residence is a property lived in at some stage before death. There is no minimum period but you must have lived there. Buy-to-let properties are specifically excluded.
If, however, you do not have direct decedents or do not own your home, unfortunately, nothing changes for you, as you are unable to use the additional allowance.
Why choose Johnson & Gaunt?
If the change in inheritance tax will benefit you and you decide now is the time to make that Will you have been thinking about, why not contact us?
The thought of writing your Will can be stressful but often is not once you speak to someone helpful. We are a local, approachable firm, whose friendly and efficient staff can guide you through the processes involved.
For more information and assistance please contact Sarah Horton in our Banbury office on 01295 759400 or firstname.lastname@example.org or Teresa Ingarfield in our Chipping Norton office on 01608 643051 or email@example.com