It’s been 4 weeks since my husband died still no answers.
Received the coroner interim death certificate and a email yesterday stating that the professor has finished with his heart!
Completely devastated confused and emotionally drained.
I’ve got to start sorting out his estate there’s a house in his name along with some debts.
I’ve returned the life insurance policy and also returned his death in service policy.
My question is has anyone applied and done probate themselfs?
I’ve read a lot about the hefty fees and also how easy it can be to do yourself.

Zozo, a few years ago I did probate because our son said I could so I did. Since I have talk to other people who have employed some to do it and it seems our son was right. One way or the other you have to sort out everything that they needed to fill in the form which for me was the hard bit. Writing to each company, filling in the forms and returning them. So my personal feeling is if you are positive and have the time it helps with the grieving. The probate form is the easy bit and I am not sure how anyone can actually check what you put, they are looking for big fraud.
I worked myself into a state when going to the office to swear on the bible and it was a non event. Hope this helps. S xxx

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Dear Zozo

I am going through Probate. Rushed head-long into getting a solicitor thinking the payouts would cover the legal fees only to be proven wrong. If you do go down that route shop around and check what is included. Having received multiple forms to check or part-complete I do not think it would have been too bad an effort for me to sort out myself. In fact I have landed up ringing some of the pension companies myself to sort things. The house is through Land Registry once probate is complete and costs around £40 I am led to believe. Debts and cost of funeral are offset against any monies that you may receive. But the critical question it appears when dealing with pensions etc is to get clear evidence as to whether the payment is being made direct to you as next of kin or to your husband’s estate. Probate is only interested in monies paid into the Estate. I found the companies were helpful in telling me if it were to the Estate and Probate required.

On reflection I should have started the process myself but at the time I was dealing with the Police and Coroner’s office and was overwhelmed.

At four weeks you will also still be in shock so take your time before you make a decision. If you think there is anything I can help you with in terms of the process then just private message me.

Sheila x

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Hi Zozo

I did the probate for my mum online and it was easy to do, but my mums estate was simple. There was a will and it was divided equally between my sister and I.

With my dad, we had to use a solicitor as he had not left a will and his estate was more complicated.

You are entitled to 30 minutes free with a solicitor. Maybe you could arrange this with one to get an idea of whether you could do probate yourself?



Zozo, just a last thought but hope it is still there. There was a phone line to the probate office and a really kind gentleman helped me twice when I wasn’t sure what to put into the form. The second time he apologised for not telling me before, That I had to write the money figures onto the form by hand.

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Hi Zozo,

I lost my husband back in March and I have just completed probate. I did manage to complete it myself, with the help of some family members. So the final cost was £250 ish, which you have to pay for probate. I won’t say it was easy but got there in the end. If I can be of any help please private message me and I will do my best to point you in the right direction.

The biggest battle is having to deal with all this due to a situation we would rather not be in.

Take care

Dee xx


Forgot to say, just so you don’t feel under pressure. You have 12 months from date of death to complete probate. They recommend doing it within 6 months if there is any chance that inheritance tax needs to be paid, because after that time you are charged interest


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Hi Zozo
I am currently waiting on probate, I did complete the forms myself, you just need to gather all the information together first. Mine was purely for one of the life policies who are insisting on it, My husband did not leave a will, so my application is ‘letters of administration’ (but the form online is still under probable) but the property was in joint names so I had no issue with that. I submitted the probate on the 16th of September and heard nothing since, it was £221. My husband has been gone 11 weeks and I am still waiting on cause of death from the coroner, I did manage to use the interim certificate for most things but the other life insurance and his pension will not do anything until we get a proper death certificate. To be honest it’s waiting for the cause of death that is the worst. I feel I am in limbo not knowing what happened to my love. He was 48, no illness, just gone within an hour, it is agony x


Thank for your advice x

Thanks for your advice I’ve decided start it myself with many doubts that I can’t do it!
I’ve got great support around me who are willing to help x

Thank you for advice I’m going to try do it myself.
Sorry for your loss I know how you feel waiting for cause of death it’s the worse feeling week 6 for me now IM BROKEN X

Dear @Zozo
It’s taken me 10 months to submit probate to sheriff Court, I kept pushing it back as its the final thing to be done & I couldn’t face it.
The solicitor quoted me £1250 plus vat plus court fee £268 but I could hear my dear husbands outraged voice saying ‘all that money to get MY hard earned money over to you? No way!’
So I googled help with probate & found a great guy who specialises in this, paid him £175 & got a great service. All templates & guidance that is lacking on .gov websites was available & he checked all forms before I submitted. Couldn’t have done it without him.
I am Scotland so law differs, but I’m sure you’ll be able to find an English equivalent to the ‘my probate Mike Davies in Edinburgh’
I took the final papers & docs to court last week (postal service in our area experiencing severe disruption due to covid/staff shortages) & had to ,listen to a totally unfeeling robot clerk’s lecture on why personal visits to the office were not allowed due to covid.
I could have told her I know too well about covid, having my life totally ruined by it.
She’ll realise when she is faced with loss, meanwhile I’ll keep my powder dry until I get the forms I need, then I will lodge a few suggestions about the quality of their customer service.


Hi Zozo, just checking to see how you are doing?
Just to add I submitted my letters of administration on the 15th of September and got it granted and paperwork received Friday so it took just over 9 weeks. Also for all the form filling and cost it’s just a couple of lines on a bit of stamped paper :slightly_frowning_face:. At least I can submit to the insurance people now although they are quoting at least 4 weeks until they even look at it.
Take care x

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Im glad yours has gone through must feel like a little weight of your shoulders.
Hi I’m still in the middle of applying for administration im stuck and confused on the questions about life insurance and the pension both are getting paid out to me but are they also a part of my late husband estate?
There isn’t any family members or friends that I know have done this it’s hard to ask for the help.
Any advice would be appreciated as I really want to get it submitted but don’t want to give up at the last hurdle and pay out for somebody to do it.
I wish I could just run through it with somebody with out costing a fortune.
Thanks x

My husband would think the same!
There isn’t huge amounts left in his estate anyway but what there he would want myself and kids to have.
Inheritance tax is 40% stung out of more money!

Dear Zozo

I unfortunately went down the solicitor route and it is costing me a fortune. The Pension companies themselves can confirm if they are making payment to the estate or not. A number of my husband’s pension companies explained that they were making ‘discretionary’ payments which did not form part of his estate. I think that Citizens Advice may be able to offer you some help. I think if you are a named beneficiary on the insurance and pension nomination forms these are classed as payments direct to yourself and not to the estate.

You do have to value the contents of your property and halve this and also the value of the property if you are home owners. In terms of expenses include the cost of the funeral and the flowers, also any bills (for example credit card in husband’s name). It is a brutal process and there is no mercy when we are going through grief and loss.

It may be a long-shot but my bank said they would have helped but not sure if that was just a friendly offer or a fee attached.

Sheila is right, I rang the insurance companies and his pension and was told that none of it formed part of the estate so I did not have to include it, all I added was half of the valuation of the house and the savings he had as well as half of the value of the items in the house, I just roughly estimated it as how can I tell what the value is we lived in our house for 23 years. I then deducted of the remaining mortgage (halved) and the cost of the funeral, you would also take of any debts like loans or credit cards if you have them.
If you are uncertain ring the insurance companies and pension and just ask if it’s has to be included for inheritance purposes, they should tell you, some of the paper work they send out also states that this payment should not be included for inheritance tax purposes, it’s usually right at the end, I missed seeing it the first few times as your mind is not all there. If I had added in the insurance I would have hit the 40% threshold, but thankfully as I was the name beneficiary and it did form part of the state I was under it. Good luck, take your time I know how hard it is, what with everything else, some days it’s just too much, so put it aside until you’re ready Natasha x

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Hi zozo I don’t think you need worry about inheritance tax . Take a look at Martin Lewis website

I didn’t fall into the inheritance tax territory, prob cause the house wasn’t included in the list of my husbands estate. It wasn’t included as the title deeds have a survivorship clause, pretty self explanatory.
All his vehicles, full reg, year & current estimated value had to be included & the life insurance payout too.
The advice on the .gov website is very poor - Leaves lots of unanswered questions - and citizens advice said they couldn’t help and that I should go to a lawyer.
I just googled help with probate & found a guy on line charging £195 (big dif from lawyer quote).
I was stunned to find that anything over £30k is considered a ‘large estate’& forms are more complex.
Best of luck with your forms

Hi so say the house is worth 200k and the mortgage is 164k do I put the valuation the house being 200k?
Or 36k the figure that’s left after the mortgage is paid?
The house is not joint just my husband name.
I’m so confused I’m still waiting on cause of death for my husband still broken.
We finally laid him to rest last week 8 wks after he passed. I thought things would feel slightly easier but I’m wrong and this form is doing my head in I just want it submitted x