When someone passes away it is always an extremely difficult and emotional time. Dealing with the obvious grief is one thing, but couple that with dealing with the practicalities of things like:
- Closing bank accounts
- Notifying companies
- Selling property
- Applying for ‘Probate’ where it is needed and
- Working out whether Inheritance tax is due and if it is due, how it can be paid
…and it can make life ridiculously hard and stressful for those left behind, at a time when they really don’t feel up to coping with that stress.
That is where we step in and offer free advice to assist with executor duties and finalising estates. With over 12 years of practical experience in dealing with the estates of people who have died, we are well equipped to help.
We get asked all sorts of questions; we are asked to assist in all sorts of ways and people come to us through various routes:
- By recommendation – lovely people we have previously helped recommend us to help family and friends.
- By search – local people will see our website when searching. They’ll see all our 5* Google reviews and they’ll like the look of the website and the services we offer – all with a very personal approach.
- Existing clients or the family of clients – this is always a difficult situation as we know the person who has passed away, or we know the family who have lost someone close. We offer a sympathetic, practical ear (sometimes accompanied by a few tears where the family can’t help but get upset while we are helping them).
Some people we have helped in recent months:
- A lovely lady from Letchworth who lost her father a while ago. His affairs were complicated, and he had multiple shareholdings, amongst other assets which meant that Inheritance Tax needed to be paid. She had tried her hardest to deal with everything, but she was struggling with the sheer volume of aspects that needed to be sorted out. We took all the stress away from her by gathering information and documents together and, continuing the process on her behalf.
- A Stevenage man in his 40s who lost his partner last year. We drafted his partner’s Will while he was in hospital, and he later passed away in a local care home. Probate is needed as there is a life insurance policy that wasn’t nominated to be received by the spouse, so we are helping with the Probate application.
- Another Stevenage man who has recently lost his father and came to us after a Google search for companies who could help with administering an estate. There is a Will, and he is named as executor. There is a house to sell, so Probate is needed, and the man needed help with obtaining this. We are assisting him with this so he will end up with the Grant of Probate in his name so that he will have the right to sell the house etc. There are complications with the Will, due to people passing away before they inherited. This case has highlighted the dangers of making a Will and then not reviewing as time goes on. In this case the Will was made 30 years ago!
- A Stevenage lady who sadly lost her elderly Mum recently and was confused about what she needed to do as executor. Was there Inheritance Tax to worry about? how soon could the house go on the market? what was the process with Probate? We answered all her questions and supported her to deal with matters herself. We never charge for advice unless we end up taking on any work for our clients.
- We have got to know a lovely couple in their 80s over the last few years – helping them with new Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney and Pre-paid Funeral Plans. It was an incredibly sad day when Mrs H called to tell us that her husband had passed away in June. Since then, we’ve held a meeting at their home in Hitchin to go through everything and to offer advice. Mrs H has decided that she would like our assistance with applying for Probate, so we are currently dealing with this for her.
All the people we have helped will hopefully say that we have offered a sensitive, personal service at a time when they really needed it. Always there at the end of the phone (returning calls the same day wherever possible), always responsive with emails (usually responding within 24 hours) and always offering a listening ear and practical advice.
It is our pleasure and privilege to be able to support people in this way after the loss of a loved one and there is a lot of useful information on our website.