Below is a brief guide to answer some of the questions you may have.  Please telephone or email the team for any further assistance.

At our Stafford Office - Tel 01785 252377

Jemma Blake - email Jemma        Sally Hatton - email Sally

At our Stoke on Trent office - Tel 01782 813315

Natalie Whitmore - email Natalie        Carole Hill - email Carole

What happens after my death? - whether you have a Will or not your estate may need to be administered.  This means that all of your assets will need to be cashed in or transferred, all liabilities paid and the remainder distributed between the beneficiaries in accordance with your Will, or if there is no Will, in accordance with the Rules of Intestacy.

Depending on the value of the assets the estate may need to go to probate and a Grant obtained.  A Grant of Probate (or Letters of Administration if there is no will) enables the Executors (or Administrators) to administer an estate. This procedure will usually take some months and possibly longer if the estate is complicated.

Inheritance Tax - when the estate is administered then, with a few exceptions, any Inheritance Tax that is due will need to be paid.

Since October 2007 it is possible for spouses and civil partners to transfer any Nil Rate Band that was unused when the first spouse died and add this to the Nil Rate Band available when the second spouse dies. This transfer of the unused portion of Nil Rate Band can be very useful in saving Inheritance Tax on the second death, but it does mean that executors (or administrators) need to keep detailed accounts for the administration of the estate of the first spouse to die. Without accurate records this valuable tax saving could be lost.

For more information on Inheritance Tax and the transferable Nil Rate Bands see our Inheritance Tax Summary.

What can we do to help? - we can offer the level of assistance that your executors (or administrators) require.

We can help and advise the executors (or administrators) in how to administer the estate and also in obtaining the Grant. We can also deal with estate accounts and Inheritance Tax forms, including applying for the transfer of a spouse’s unused Nil Rate Band or ensuring that sufficient records are kept to enable a transfer of an unused Nil Rate Band in the future.

We understand that this is a difficult time and if the executors (or administrators) wish we can handle the entire administration on their behalf and help to ease the burden.