We Have for many years worked with organisations and charities
Dealing with probate can be stressful and confusing
We at M2M Community Solicitors LLP have for many years worked with organisations and charities assisting people in the community and understand the difficulties they face at these difficult times. Dealing with probate can be stressful and confusing at one of the points in your life when you are in a vulnerable state.
If there is a Will
If your loved one has died leaving a Will then the Will should provide instructions as to who deals with the estate and ‘who gets what’. There are potentially many forms which need to be completed based on what your loved ones estate contains and the value of the estate. We can provide initial advice to you on the procedure if the executors (or executrices if female) wish to deal with the paperwork yourselves or we can assist and take that pressure away from you.
If there is no Will
If your loved one dies without leaving a Will then the law of intestacy takes over. There is a specific order in which the deceased’s estate is shared and this can cause problems within families when certain relatives no longer talk but are legally entitled to receive assets of an estate.Again we can provide initial advice to you on the procedure if you, the personal representatives wish to deal with the paperwork yourselves or we can assist and take the pressure away from you.
Most of the time, probate is simple and straight forward to deal with however, there are circumstances when the matter becomes more complicated. This can be because the executor of the Will has failed to deal with the probate matter and beneficiaries of the Will are frustrated with the circumstance or a beneficiary or another person who believes that they should be a beneficiary wants to challenge the Will. In order to challenge a Will, you would need to show that at least one of the requirements for the construction of a Will has not been satisfied.
We can assist with contentious and non contentious probate matters.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I get Legal Aid to help with my case?
Legal Aid is not available for bankruptcy cases. We do charge for our services and the amount will depend on what work is required. There are many places providing bankruptcy advice and some of those are free services however, they are not all specialist bankruptcy advisors and based on our experience and feedback from other client’s incorrect advice has been given by others on whether a person should be declared bankrupt. All matters should be fully assessed prior to any advice being given so that advisors are aware of all correct information, most commonly whether clients are home owners. Seeking advice from a person experienced in dealing with bankruptcy is the safer option.
What do I need to bring to a meeting?
We will need you to bring photographic identification such as a valid driving licence or passport, a utility bill with your name and address dated within 3 months of the meeting and proof of your income for example a payslip or bank statement showing income being paid into your account.
You should also bring a copy of any Court papers you have if you are already bankrupt and any correspondence from the Insolvency Service, Official Receiver and/or Trustee in Bankruptcy. If you are not yet bankrupt but have received a Statutory Demand then a copy of the Statutory Demand and a list of all debts that you have with the last correspondence from each creditor showing who you owe, the amount you owe and the type of debt, whether that is a loan, catalogue, credit card, utility bill or other debt.
You should also bring with you a list of your income with proof such as payslips, benefit letters and bank account statements showing all of your income being paid into your account(s) and a list of your expenditure with proof so for each utility bills, a copy of the bills, a copy of your Council Tax letter, receipts if you have them from your shopping and such alike.
If you believe that you have a beneficial interest in a property owned by another person, which could be your husband/wife, mother/father, partner, son/daughter or friend then bring in proof of what you believe you contributed towards the property. This could be proof that you paid towards the deposit for the property, proof you have paid the mortgage or paid for works in the property which has led to the value of the property increasing such as a house extension.
What does the beneficial interest in another person’s property mean?
When a person owns a property, there is legal ownership and equitable ownership through a person’s beneficial ownership. This is a complex argument to make in many cases but is relevant in cases where the property is owned by one person but another person has contributed money to the property but is not the legal owner. This can be by paying the deposit or towards the deposit, making mortgage payments, carrying out work in the property to increase the value of the property. We have successfully established a person’s beneficial interest in a property by negotiation which is cheaper than if the matter proceeded to Court where the amounts achieved have ranged dependent on the amount of evidence clients have been able to produce.