New fees ignore asset-rich but cash-poor property owners

The government is going ahead with an unprecedented increase in probate application fees based on the value of an estate despite overwhelming opposition by lawyers.

Of the 853 responses to the consultation, 695 said it would not be fairer to move to a proportionate fee structure. Objections included the fact that the administration involved was the same irrespective of the value of an estate and that the cost should be set by reference to the service provided.

Some of the respondents who disagreed also pointed out that the proposed fee was set above cost recovery levels and therefore amounted to a form of taxation. Some commented that the serv...

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