Probate is the process of dealing with the financial and legal aspects of a person’s property, possessions, money and assets, also known as their estate, following their death. Before any of the items mentioned above can be distributed as laid out in the will that can be written by Will writing service Cheltenham Bees and Co a grant of probate may have to be applied for.
This is a legal document that is needed in order to be able to access the bank accounts, assets and debts of the deceased individual. Once this document has been granted the executors can start working through the wishes of the individual and can distribute the estate’s assets.
There are essentially five main phases that are involved in the probate process and these can vary in timescales depending on whether the deceased person has lots of financial assets and lots of property.
The first phase sees all the assets and liabilities of the person identified so that the total value of the estate can be established. Alongside this the will is examined to see who is entitled to what in accordance with the deceased person’s wishes. Identification of any beneficiaries may be sought.
The next phase pays off any inheritance to HMRC along with the relevant forms. A Grant of Representation is then sought to all the estate to be administered. The third phase occurs once this grant has been awarded and the assets are then liquidated to pay any liabilities and settle any tax or other expenses that need to be paid.
The fourth phase requires full documentation of all payments that occurred in and out of the estate during the above phases. The balance that can be distributed in accordance with the deceased person’s wishes is then reported to the executors of the will.
The final phase sees the remaining assets transferred to the beneficiaries that are named in the will. If any challenges or difficulties arise and are brought up within the will these need to be dealt with before this transfer can take place.
Probate is needed if the deceased person owned any property. Banks or other financial institutions require a grant of probate in order to release funds or allow access to account details. It is the financial situation of the person that has passed away that will determine the need for probate. It is not determined as to whether they have a will in place or not.
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Probate can be dealt with by any qualified individuals and these include solicitors and probate professionals. In some cases this might be the same person who has been appointed to write the will.