Soaring fees set deadline for executors and estate planning

Controversial court fees which have been branded a stealth tax on bereaved families are expected to prompt a surge in probate applications before the hike hits. The new banded fee structure will see the cost of probate soar by thousands of pounds for higher value estates. The current flat fee is £215 for a personal application for probate, or £155 when handled through a solicitor, but this is to be replaced by a tiered set of fees. While the fees have been reined in from the original proposal last year,…

Getting rocky relationships through the New Year

The month of January can be a rocky one for families, in the post- Christmas period, which is often followed with news of unhappy couples who decide to call it quits, as family lawyers receive a surge of enquiries in the New Year.   According to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the overall rates of divorce are continuing to fall. There were 111,169 divorces in 2014, a decrease of 3.1% compared with 2013 and 27% lower than 2003. Compared with data from 2004, divorce rates were…

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