Applying for probate to deal with the estate of a loved one can be a terribly difficult task. Not only do you have to deal with feelings of great personal loss but on top of that, the amount of work and responsibility that can be placed upon you in times of crisis can be extremely overwhelming.
Fortunately, it’s not as difficult as it seems and there are a variety of ways you can approach the task at hand to make it easier on yourself and your family. Below are three main ways you might consider applying for probate.
1. Self Application
Believe it or not, it’s not as difficult as it seems. Applying for probate usually begins with having the estate of a loved one valued; filling in a selection of forms from your local council to show exactly what was contained in the estate, swearing an oath that all the information is true, and in very simple cases, it being granted.
In most cases it’s extremely easy and inexpensive so you shouldn’t encounter any problems with your applications. Complications may arise however if any part of the estate is contested. In these instances you may find you have an ownership fight on your hands – something which can be difficult when dealing with the grief associated with the loss of a friend or relative. If you’re application for probate is for a large estate or involves a large family then you may want to consider one of the other options listed below to pre-empt any potential problems.
2. Private Solicitor
More expensive but extremely useful (especially when it comes to the estate being contested by anyone) many private solicitors are trained in probate law which means you can get the help you need.
Hiring one will save you a lot of time and stress should anything go wrong but will have certain costs attached. If the estate is fairly limited it may not be the best way to go but for those looking for a dedicated professional to handle their financial affairs this is ideal. As with all financial or legal processes, there are always ways to cut costs and plenty of discrepancies between prices. Asking about reliable individuals who charge fair prices is always recommended and you should investigate all your options before parting with your cash and hiring a solicitor.
3. Legal Services Company
Several high street companies provide the same service as a private solicitor but at a fraction of the cost. Co-Operative probate for example is a very solid middle ground between value for money and outstanding support. This means that the process is extremely simple for you so you will gain the same degree of professional legal representation but without having to worry about your finances as much.
This method is by far the most comprehensive when it comes to saving you time and money and means you get the reassurance of being backed by professionals without facing extortionate fees. Of course, you should always discuss you options thoroughly before making any agreements and then means discussing how the process will work with the firm themselves.