Dealing with the administration of a loved one’s estate after they have died can be daunting, especially at such a difficult time.
The process is often time-consuming and can be complex, meaning for many people, professional help is the best option. We can deal with probate and estate administration on your behalf, with the aim of making the undertaking as easy and stress-free as possible for you.
At Bell Lamb & Joynson, we have been helping people in the North West with their legal needs for 200 years. Our probate and estate administration team are friendly and sympathetic and will do all they can to help you at this difficult time.
If you choose to instruct us, you can expect:
- Clear, bespoke advice from a team of approachable, skilled and highly reviewed probate and estate administration solicitors.
- A sensitive, personal service offering support and guidance throughout.
- Fast responses to your calls and emails.
- Clear, fixed costs so that you know exactly how much the estate is being charged.
- For probate clients, a free 30-minute consultation offering initial advice and answering any questions you may have.
To see what our clients have said about us, read our excellent reviews.
Get in touch with our estate administration solicitors in Liverpool, Runcorn and Warrington
We are happy to communicate in the way that suits you best. As well as phone calls and emails, you can pop into your local Bell Lamb & Joynson office or speak to us via WhatsApp or video conferencing software such as Zoom, Skype, FaceTime and Microsoft Teams.
How our probate and estate administration lawyers can help you
Dealing with the winding up of someone’s estate after their death can take many hours over a lengthy period of time. It involves finalising all of their financial affairs, including identifying and paying debts and locating all of their assets.
Our probate and estate administration solicitors can represent executors and administrators and take on the winding up of the deceased’s affairs on your behalf. Our services include the following:
- Identifying and valuing the deceased’s assets – to include obtaining professional valuations of property and valuable items.
- Calculating and paying Inheritance Tax – based on the value of the estate.
- Applying for a Grant of Probate or a Grant of Letters of Administration – the document giving legal authority to the estate’s executors or administrators to deal with the deceased’s affairs.
- Collecting in the estate assets – writing to asset holders such as banks, share registrars, insurance companies and pensions administrators.
- Selling property – to include arranging for clearance.
- Paying all of the deceased’s debts – to include any tax liabilities.
- Preparing detailed estate accounts – showing all assets and liabilities.
- Ensuring all debtors and beneficiaries have been located – placing advertisements in local and national press where necessary.
- Distributing the net estate – sending funds to the beneficiaries named in the Will or entitled to inherit under the Rules of Intestacy, to include obtaining necessary receipts.
Our solicitor will work proactively to ensure the administration is dealt with as quickly as possible. We will always keep you updated as to progress throughout and make sure we are available to answer any questions you may have.
Our costs are clear, transparent and fixed. Full details of our fixed costs are available here.
Why choose our probate and administration of estates solicitors?
We know that choosing the right solicitor at such a difficult time can seem a daunting task. At Bell Lamb & Joynson, we offer outstanding personal service to our clients as well as leading legal expertise. Your experience as a client is as important to us as achieving excellent results on your behalf and we apply this principle to everything we do.
The benefits of choosing us as your legal representatives include:
200 years of heritage, coupled with a modern approach
For 200 years, people from across the North West have chosen our services, including from local communities in Liverpool, Runcorn and Warrington.
While we’re a traditional law firm, we also embrace the latest technology to streamline our services and ensure we are fast, effective and cost-efficient.
We have a client-friendly portal that you can use for the following:
- To view all our pricing information
- Access information about you and your legal needs via our straightforward forms
- Pay your legal bills securely
- View and read your legal documents
We have been awarded the Law Society Lexcel Accreditation for our high standards of client care. We are also Cyber Essentials certified which means we have robust IT infrastructure and policies to protect your personal data. We can communicate online and transfer important legal documents safely.
Excellent client feedback
Here are just a few reviews we’ve received from clients:
“The video meeting was very straightforward and enabled us to discuss our needs with [Jannina]. She then prepared the Wills and sent them for us to check. We had to delay our final signing of the Wills after [Jannina] had prepared them as we had just moved house. She was very understanding and arranged the signing to suit us.” – Review Solicitors, Liverpool office regarding Jannina Barker.
“BLJ acted on my behalf in relation to probate for my late Aunties Will. I was always treated with the utmost respect and professionalism, I could not recommend BLJ more highly.” – Review Solicitors, Liverpool office.
Our probate and estate administration solicitors are upfront and honest about fees from the start so that you will know how much expenditure the estate is incurring throughout.
You can also get in touch with us if you have any questions about costs or would like a tailored quote and we will be more than happy to help.
Probate and estate administration FAQs
What is the difference between probate and estate administration?
Probate refers to obtaining the Grant of Probate from the Probate Registry. This is the document that gives legal authority to the estate’s executors so that they can deal with the deceased’s financial affairs. Where the deceased did not leave a Will, their administrators will apply for a Grant of Letters of Administration instead. In some cases, such as where the estate is very small, a Grant will not be needed.
Estate administration refers to the process of finalising all of the deceased’s affairs.
What does an estate administrator do?
An estate administrator or executor will deal with all of the details of winding up the estate. This includes collecting in assets, paying debts, drawing up estate accounts and distributing the estate in accordance with the deceased’s Will or, if they did not make a Will, in line with the Rules of Intestacy.
Who can be an estate administrator?
After a death where no Will has been left naming an executor, someone can apply to the Probate Registry to be appointed the estate administrator. This is generally someone who is entitled to inherit under the Rules of Intestacy, which set out in strict order of preference who will receive the deceased’s estate and in what shares.
A spouse takes priority, followed by any children of the deceased.
Is it worth getting a professional estate administrator?
Estate administration can require a large number of hours spent on paperwork, contacting asset holders and debtors, arranging for valuations and sales and preparing accounts. While some people are happy to take on this role, for some it is simply too time-consuming or daunting. Where the deceased did not leave a Will, the process can also be more complex.
It is worth bearing in mind that the estate executor or administrator can be held personally liable for any losses they cause to the estate, even if these were as a result of a genuine error.
Appointing a professional probate solicitor to deal with the administration on your behalf can be beneficial if you do not believe you have the time or the expertise to take on the task yourself.
At Bell Lamb & Joynson, our probate team have an in-depth understanding of the process, meaning we can deal with the administration quickly and efficiently, avoiding unnecessary delays.
What can you do if you are unhappy with the way an estate is being administered?
If you are not satisfied with the work of an estate executor or administrator, you can apply to the court to have them removed. It is advisable to seek legal advice before embarking on this process to see if an alternative solution can be agreed.
Get in touch with our probate and estate administration solicitors in Liverpool, Runcorn and Warrington
We are happy to communicate in whatever way is most convenient for you. As well as phone calls and emails, you can pop into your local Bell Lamb & Joynson office or speak to us via WhatsApp or video conferencing software such as Zoom, Skype, FaceTime and Microsoft Teams.