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Talk to me about probate

(9 Posts)
MummyDoIt Tue 02-Sep-08 09:54:03

Do you need a solicitor when someone dies or can you sort it yourself? DH left a will, very straightforward leaving everything to me. Is it really necessary to appoint a solicitor to sort things out or is it something I can manage myself? Really have no idea what is involved.

mumoverseas Tue 02-Sep-08 10:05:50

I'm sorry about DH, it must be a really difficult time for you. I'm sorry I can't be too much help but I'm pretty sure you don't have to officially appoint a solicitor and can apply for probate yourself. I did this a few years ago when my dad died but to be honest, I was in a bit of a daze most of the time so was lucky enough to have a solicitor whom I knew deal with most of it. You will need to have the original will and death certificate and then I seem to recall I had to do some sort of affidavit (sworn statement) which you have to 'swear in front of a solicitor'. why not contact the CAB and see if they are any help or wait and see if a probabe expert reads this? If any property needs transferring from his name to your name you will need a conveyancing solicitor to deal with this for you. Good luck

Freckle Tue 02-Sep-08 10:31:44

Tbh, even if it's fairly simple, I think using a solicitor is probably the way to go. Dealing with unfamiliar legal matters is not something you really want to have to contend with at this time. If your property has to be transferred into your name, you will need a solicitor anyway. Call round a few and get some estimates of costs. Ask friends for recommendations.

RubyRioja Tue 02-Sep-08 10:47:55

Probate has changed quite a lot in the last few years. It has become much simpler.

I obtained probate for my mum - straightforward will and tranference of ownership of property.

You need to get statements at date of death for all accounts and outstanding debts (credit cards etc) which tbh is easy in practical terms and hard in emotional terms.

The probate service have offices in all counties I think and are very helpful. The process where you swear you are implementing the will takes about 10 minutes and costs £90.

We used a solicitor when FIL died and it cost about £7K.

If you have someone who you trust to help with phone calls and letters it is doable. Equally I think it helped me to face a little bit of grieving every day - I used to write one letter or make one call every day - it was all I could manage.

If money is a pressing issue, (hopefully you have a joint account and not everything is frozen) then I think you can make probate happen faster than a solicitor who has multiple cases and no personal interest.

it is probably helpful if you have someone to sound off too - my mum insisted on calling life insurance the 'blood money' and I had to force her to accept the money, even though she needed it.

I would say a good friend could be a big help.

This tells you a bit more about it www.hmcourts-service.gov.uk/infoabout/civil/probate/index.htm but I found the people there gentle and helpful.

Such a bastard to have to tackle this stuff when you are already suffering.

Hope you are managing to eat drink and get soem sleep.

mummypoppins Tue 02-Sep-08 15:31:37

mummy do it. I am a probate solcitor and have always offered free advice on here for Mnetters.

Cat me and I will help. If you look back on the widows and widowers of mumsnet unite thread I posted some advice on there for evenstar a month back. That may help. Otherwise get in touch PLEASE.

MP

Lilymaid Tue 02-Sep-08 15:41:45

I'm dealing with probate for my mother at the moment. It isn't difficult, just tedious. As RubyRioja says, do a letter per day. You may wish to use a solicitor if matters are more complicated and for registering land in your own name.

MummyDoIt Tue 02-Sep-08 15:45:44

Mummypoppins, that is an incredibly generous offer. Thank you so much. I'll CAT you in the next day or two.

throckenholt Tue 02-Sep-08 16:50:33

I think there are lots of books in the library that tell you how to do it - may well be worth picking one of those up.

RubyRioja Tue 02-Sep-08 19:58:42

Big High Five to Mummy Poppins
How kind

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