31 May Do I need a solicitor to deal with probate?
People who find themselves acting as executor for the will of a friend or loved one who’s passed away often naturally turn to a solicitor to assist them.
We’d always advise using a professional to assist with probate (although you can go through the process yourself), but using a firm of probate specialists could turn out to be a better choice than a lawyer.
How are probate firms better than lawyers?
You’ll get exactly the same outcome as you would with solicitors
The process of dealing with probate is virtually the same if you’re a solicitor, a probate professional or an individual taking it on without help. Going it alone can be tricky without support, but a probate professional is just as capable of looking after it for you as a lawyer, holding all the necessary legal qualifications.
We’re often cheaper
Specialist probate companies are usually cheaper than using a firm of solicitors. Lawyers will charge a premium price and you might find you’re billed at an hourly rate or on a percentage of the estate. If you’re using a probate company, you should ask for a fixed quote before work is started, so you know exactly what you need to pay.
What do you think when you picture a lawyer? An older man in a grey suit, sat behind a desk in an office full of leather-bound books? Firms like ours couldn’t be more different. We put our clients at the centre of everything we do and treat each case individually and with compassion. We’re available in the evenings and at weekends and will come to meet you at your home if that’s what you need.
Probate is all we do
Lawyers have numerous clients and often practice a number of different types of law. Companies such as ours specialise only in probate and wills, so you can be confident that we know what we’re doing. We can even deal with international and contentious probate.
How do I choose who’s best placed to help me with probate?
If you find yourself in need of help with probate, you’ll more than likely have a lot on your mind. So decide what’s important to you and check what the firms on your shortlist offer.
If you work 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, a company that only opens office hours probably won’t be right for you.
And where are they based? If you need to meet them, can you get to them easily? Or will they come to you?
To get a feel for the companies you’re looking at, check their online reviews.
Make sure they have plenty of genuine positive ones. Look out for any reviews mentioning anything particularly important to you – be it price, manners, availability or something else.
Do you really need a solicitor? Unless you’re sure that you want a solicitor (maybe you have a family firm you use for everything), look at what probate specialists can offer.
Finally, ask for quotes and get an understanding of what your case could cost. You might see some stark variations. Keep an eye out for any firms offering fixed prices or price promises – these sorts of features can help you get a competitive quote. We’d always advise that you have a clear picture of what you’ll be paying before allowing anyone to take up your case.
If you want to talk through your options a little further, we’re just at the end of the phone. Give us a ring on 020 8017 1029 for a no obligation chat.