Delia Orme and Jane Thackstone are qualified to advise on non-contentious probate matters. They offer a flexible service, either taking on the whole probate process on your behalf, or providing essential support and advice to you when needed,

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When you are grieving it can seem far too difficult to deal with tax and applying for probate (the process of dealing with the instructions left in a will).

Alliotts’ partner Delia Orme, and associate Jane Thackstone, are qualified to advise you on the whole process. This is as a result of changes to regulations for legal work allowing specially qualified accountants to do this work.

As most of the information needed is a financial exercise (and we as accountants are experienced in gathering financial information, producing valuations, IHT calculations and related tax returns), undertaking probate work is a perfect fit for us.

Apart from her technical expertise, Delia has years of experience in dealing with sensitive matters at difficult times and is able to provide that objective point of view and welcome voice of reason, when things may appear far too complicated, particularly where there may be tricky relationships involved.

Delia offers a flexible service, either taking on the whole probate process on your behalf, or providing essential support and advice to you as and when needed, should you choose to apply for probate yourself.

Throughout the probate process we guarantee that:

  • We will explain everything to you in jargon-free, plain English
  • You will have personal direct contact with Delia and Jane
  • You will be kept regularly updated as matters progress
  • You will receive a service that is sensitive and responsive to your needs and those of your family

Delia offers a full range of services to support you though the whole probate process, alternatively you may decide that you need support and assistance at specific times.

We can assist you in the following areas:

  • Checking that the Will is valid and is the last Will made by the deceased
  • Assembling and checking of the deceased’s financial information
  • Tracing and valuing assets
  • Identifying and paying all debts of the estate
  • Calculation of Inheritance Tax, Income Tax, and Capital Gains Tax due
  • The preparation and submission of HMRC tax forms
  • Tracing missing beneficiaries
  • Arranging matters for the sale of property
  • Preparing estate accounts showing the final position of the estate with all transactions reconciled to the probate valuations
  • The payment of legacies to beneficiaries including charities
  • Providing tax advice (IHT, CGT and Income tax) to the executors and beneficiaries helping them plan the structure of their inheritance
  • Trust planning and trustee services including advising on Nil Rate Band Trusts
  • Administering the estate of a person who died without a Will (intestate)
  • Will writing service

Indicative timescales and process

Obtaining Grant of Probate can take anywhere between eight weeks and nine months. Although if there any difficulties encountered with the validity of the Will or valuation of the estate assets, then it should take considerably longer.

Once grant of probate has been received we would assist with realising the value of the estate assets and paying off any liabilities, including all tax liabilities. This stage would take approximately two months, however this would be longer if there are properties to sell.

Interim accounts would then be prepared to show the value achieved (less costs and fees).

Then all specific legacies would be paid out followed by an interim distribution which would normally be made to each of the remaining beneficiaries.

After that a final set of accounts would be prepared including all income and expenditure since date of death, and distributions made to date.

Our final fees agreed with the executors and the balance due to the beneficiaries determined for final distribution.

Transparent fee structure

It is our policy to be transparent in our pricing structure and to agree the basis of our fees with clients in advance of starting work on an assignment. As an ICAEW accredited probate firm we are required to publish our fee structure for probate services.

Our fees for probate work are charged on a fixed fee for obtaining the grant of probate. We then offer assistance with the administration of the estate and this work is generally charged on a time spent basis, so that you only pay for the work that we do for you.  Our fees are never charged on a percentage of the value of an estate.

We will first discuss your situation in detail in order to gain an accurate understanding of the service that you need from us. Before our engagement is confirmed we will set out our fixed fee for obtaining Grant of Probate including Probate Registry charges we also indicate the basis of charges for the administration of the estate.

Our service provision is tailored to a client’s particular situation, however, to help provide you with an indication of our fees, we outline three typical scenarios below and an estimate of our fees in each case based on previous experience.

Scenario 1

Miss A

The situation: Miss A is the sole executor of the will of her widower father (the last surviving parent). Father’s uncontested will appears valid and there are no apparent complicating factors.

The estate: Bank accounts, Investments, total value estimated £500,000.

The scope of work: Assisting the client in obtaining a grant of probate. Completion of IHT forms. We are not required by the client to administer the estate.

Estimated fee range:  £2,250 – £2,950 (plus VAT)

Summary of service provision: Obtaining a grant of probate. Low value estate, easily identifiable assets.

Scenario 2

Mr B

The situation: Mr B is the sole executor of the will of his widowed mother (the last surviving parent). There are two beneficiaries. Mother’s uncontested will appears valid and there are no apparent complicating factors.

The estate: High value assets totalling £1,200,000. Obtaining valuations has been straightforward.

The scope of work: Assisting the client in obtaining a grant of probate. Preparation of the Inheritance Tax Forms (IHT400). We are not required by the client to administer the estate.

Estimated fee range:  £4,000 – £5,500  (plus VAT)

Summary of service provision: Calculating Inheritance Tax and completion of IHT forms including review of whether there is availability for transfer of unused IHT nil rate bands and residence nil rate band for a pre-deceased spouse. Obtaining a grant of probate. High value, easily identifiable assets. Simple will

Scenario 3

Miss C

The situation: Miss C is one of 4 joint executors, one of whom lives abroad.  The will is of her widower father (the last surviving parent). Father’s uncontested will appears valid. Father inherited his spouse’s estate in its entirety 6 months previously.

The estate: Value of estate inherited from spouse is £1,800,000. Value of father’s own estate is £2,400,000.  Total value is £4,200,000. The estate consists of cash, stock market investments, and a private pension; properties in the UK and a property overseas.

The scope of work: Advise on which executors would best act, then assist them in obtaining a grant of probate, completion of IHT400 forms  and administer the estate.

Estimated fee range:  £9,500 – £20,500 (plus VAT)

Summary of service provision: Full administration of estate including obtaining a grant of probate (complex).   If required, we can refer to our international associates (legal and accountancy) for professional advice in overseas jurisdictions to assist as necessary.


Probate Application Fees payable to HMRC are £273. There is a small additional charge for extra copies of the Grant of Probate.

Bankruptcy search – £5 per beneficiary

Notification in The London Gazette and a local newspaper of the individual’s death to protect against claims from unknown creditors – £300 to £500.

Specialist Advice

Click here to view the ICAEW register of accredited probate firms. Please note that all probate work is undertaken from our Guildford office.

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Guides & Publications21 Dec 2022

Probate Services Brochure

Alliotts LLP is an independent firm of Chartered Accountants and business advisors practice based in London and Guildford. We provide a wide range of national and international clients with a full range of professional services. Working together is about more than our technical ability, it is essential we deliver the highest levels of client care

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Contact us

For a discreet and confidential discussion about how we can help you through the probate process please contact Delia Orme or Jane Thackstone.

    Delia Orme | Alliotts



    View Delia's profile

    Delia has been advising private clients and businesses for over 30 years on a wide range of taxation issues. As a Chartered Accountant and Chartered Tax Advisor Delia provides inclusive personal and business tax advice that helps clients plan for the future.

    When advising business owners on their strategy, financial affairs and tax matters Delia treats the business as part of the owner’s overall financial picture. Clients have the reassurance of knowing that their tax planning is in capable hands and that they receive thought out advice that is specific to them; integrating every aspect of their lives.

    Delia provides a wide range of personal tax advisory services to ensure that they pay no more tax than they need to, whilst helping protect and pass on their wealth to the next generation. Trusts are often useful for passing on family wealth whilst staying in control, but they are very complex vehicles from a tax and legal perspective.

    Working with business owners Delia advises on tax strategies and tax compliance matters. By providing a clearer tax and financial plan for the entrepreneur shareholder, Delia guides them in growing their business.
    Delia has many years of experience advising individuals on the personal tax implications of moving to and from the UK, including the tax treatment of non doms and residency status. Where employment can be based in one or more overseas locations and often there are UK assets such as property to consider, Delia advises individuals to help them remain both compliant and tax efficient.

    There are times when clients need to unravel complex arrangements, often when separating business or personal relationships, and these have a tax impact. Delia is experienced in advising on the tax implications and tax calculations surrounding divorce. Her expertise is in thoroughly investigating the financial information available and producing robust reports to withstand scrutiny.

    When working with businesses Delia advises on a wide range of areas including

    • Corporate restructuring
    • EIS and SEIS
    • Research and Development Tax Relief (R&D)
    • Transactions
    • M&A activity
    • IR35
    • Probate

    Typical projects that Delia advises on include:

    • Maximising net spendable incomes for entrepreneurs
    • Property investment and development structures
    • Stamp Duty (SDLT)
    • Passing on family wealth through Will and Inheritance Tax Planning
    • Capital Gains Tax Planning on a variety of assets
    • Tax expert witness
    • Advising clients moving into or out of the UK for business or personal reasons.
    • Tax treatment of non dom and resident status

    Delia’s attention to detail in every assignment; her experience in the practical application of tax rules; and dedication to client care mean that clients have no hesitation referring her to their friends and family as a trusted advisor.





    View Jane's profile


    Jane is authorised to undertake non-contentious probate work for clients.  Jane and her team will work closely with the executors of the estate and provide professional support through to the end of the administration period. Jane also advises on the Inheritance Tax implications of an estate.