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Contact us

Probate, Trusts and Wills

We can assist you with the following:

  • Wills
  • Probate and Estate Administration
  • Tax Planning
  • Trusts
  • Lasting Powers of Attorney
  • Court of Protection Work
  • Management of the Affairs of the Elderly

We at Cornfield Law LLP understand the emotions caused by the death of a loved one which can be upsetting and confusing. We can help by administering the estate in a caring and understanding way.

We can advise on the preparation of Wills and also tax planning whether during your lifetime or within the terms of a Will. A Will can in some cases be an essential element of any tax planning.

A Lasting Power of Attorney is a document which enables a person, whilst they are still mentally capable to decide who they would like to deal with their affairs if they were to become mentally incapable through illness or accident. We can answer any questions you may have in this respect.

Sadly, there are times when a person becomes mentally incapable of managing their own affairs and a Lasting Power of Attorney has not been prepared. We can help you make any necessary application to be made to the Court of Protection.

Christine Haniver has been advising on Wills, Probate and Administration, Lasting Powers of Attorney, Court of Protection, Trusts and other associated matters for 40 years. She was admitted as a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Legal Executives in March 1987, became a Member of Cornfield Law LLP in 2010 and is now a Consultant. Christine is assisted by Megan Attree Associate Solicitor, Trainee Legal Executive Gabriella Taylor and her secretarial team.

To discuss any services we can offer please do not hesitate to ring  01323 412512  to arrange an appointment, or email chaniver@cornfieldlaw.co.uk or mattree@cornfieldlaw.co.uk




Probate costs vary considerably from estate to estate.


The charges to apply for the Grant of Probate only are:

  • Our legal costs £1,000 plus VAT.
  • Swearing of the Oath, £5 per Executor, plus £2 per additional document.
  • Bankruptcy searches £3 per beneficiary.
  • Advertisement in the London Gazette about £250.
  • Advertisements in local papers about £250 per paper.
  • Probate application fee of £155 plus 50p per office copy.

Minimum costs of above to obtain only a Grant of Probate: £1,540.50 plus VAT.

If additional work is required such as correspondence, there will be increased costs charged at £295 per hour plus VAT.


Once the grant of probate is obtained, then the estate can be administered. If you instruct us to administer the estate there will be additional charges. There will be charges to sell a property, sell shares or other investments, find assets or replace missing paperwork. A very simple estate might cost on average £1,500 - £2,750 +VAT to administer. A complicated estate with many assets, many beneficiaries, where there is no Will or where there is inheritance tax to be paid could cost £5,000-£15,000 + VATor even considerably more.

Once the size of the estate is known together with an idea of the likely problems, a more detailed estimate can be provided.


On average in a modest estate it can take up to 12 weeks to obtain the Grant of Probate, longer if there are complications. If inheritance tax is payable, this could also cause delays.

Once the Grant of Probate has been obtained it can take on average 6-12 months to collect in all the assets. Selling a property can cause delays, any other complications such as lost share certificates could also cause delays.

If the estate is a large one then it is likely there will be inheritance tax to pay. HMRC on their website give useful guidance as to inheritance tax payable. A taxable estate can take longer to administer because there can be delays at HMRC.

Office Locations


47 Cornfield Road,
East Sussex,
BN21 4QN
Phone: (01323) 412512
Fax: (01323) 411611


Cornfield Law LLP, Eastbourne Solicitors building