Conveyancing Fees

  • HM Land Registry- the amounts depend on the purchase price. gov.uk/fees
  • Stamp Duty Land Tax/Land Transaction Tax- the amount depends on the value of your property.
  • England – gov.uk/england-tax
  • Or in case the property is in Wales  gov.uk/wales-tax
  • VAT at 20% is chargeable on our fees and on the search fees
  • Telegraphic transfer and handling fee £35 plus VAT
  • HM Land Registry fees for copies of register, filed plan and any deeds: £3 per copy
  • Search fees – £300-£500 (the precise amount depends on the local authority)

Purchase Price

£250,000-£500,000

£1,250-£1,500 plus VAT

 

£500,001-£750,000

£1,550-£1,750 plus VAT

 

£750,001-£1,000,000

£1,850-£2,100 plus VAT

 

£1,000,001-£1,500,000

£2,250-£2,500 plus VAT

 

£2,000,001-£2,500,000

£2,650-£2,850 plus VAT

 

A bespoke legal fee will be provided for a property value over £2,500,000.

Sale Price

£250,000-£500,000

£1,150-£1,300 plus VAT

 

£500,001-£750,000

£1,400-£1,550 plus VAT

 

£750,001-£1,000,000

£1,650-£1,800 plus VAT

 

£1,000,001-£1,500,000

£1,900-£2,050 plus VAT

 

£2,000,001-£2,500,000

£2,150-£2,300 plus VAT

 

A bespoke legal fee will be provided for a property value over £2,500,000.

Re-Mortgage

Up to £500,000

£750 plus VAT

 

£500,001-£750,000

£950 plus VAT

 

£750,001-£1,000,000

£1,150 plus VAT

Non-standard Transactions

The fee table above does not apply to non-standard transactions, which are ones which feature one or more of the following complicating factors:

 

  • We are required to liaise with separate solicitors for your mortgage lender
  • The property is leasehold
  • The property is unregistered
  • The property is a new build
  • The property has exclusivity agreements
  • The property has lock-out agreements
  • There is a requirement for Islamic finance
  • A shared ownership scheme is involved
  • There is a help to buy scheme element
  • There is an ISA involved
  • The purchase is taking place under the right to buy legislation
  • The property has been repossessed
  • The purchase is taking place at an auction
  • Where our client is based overseas or is a company, as this will usually involve enhanced due diligence

 

If the transaction is non-standard for any of these reasons, we would be very pleased to provide a bespoke quote on enquiry.

 

  • £175 plus VAT-New Build Fee * for purchase files only
  • £150 plus VAT-Leasehold Supplement fee

Conveyancing Transaction Process

Purchase

 

  • Receiving your initial instructions to act for you on your purchase
  • Sending you a client care letter with the next steps and requesting monies on account to obtain AML identification checks and Searches i.e local authority search, water & drainage search, environmental search, Plan Plus Search and Chancel Indemnity Insurance Policy.
  • Investigating the title and title plan of the property
  • Ensuring the appropriate planning permission, building regulation approval and building completion certificate has been approved, *if applicable
  • Ensuring the seller has paid any financial obligations and no burden will be passed to you under the section 106 agreement, *if applicable
  • Raising additional enquiries with the seller solicitor
  • Obtaining the NHBC Certificate or other similar warranty for the development, *if a new build or flat conversion
  • Investigating further information on the development such as service charge and ground rent, *if a leasehold property
  • Checking whether a management company is involved and whether you will become a member of the management company*if a leasehold property
  • Reviewing the lease and the lease plan of your demise which outlines the property and the landlord & your obligations*if a leasehold property
  • Reviewing the searches
  • Reporting to you about the property with the contract for signature and supporting documents
  • Drafting the contract
  • Preparing your SDLT form  and submitting the SDLT Certificate
  • Acting and dealing with your mortgage lender and requesting funds from the lender,*if applicable
  • Preparing the completion such as financial statement and sending funds over to the seller solicitor
  • Submitting your documents off to the Land Registry to register you as the new owner of the property.

 

Sale

 

  • Receiving your initial instructions to act for you on your sale
  • Sending you a client care letter with the next steps and requesting monies on account to obtain AML identification checks and Land Registry documents and/or Landlord’s re sale pack *if a leasehold property.
  • Issuing draft contract papers to the buyer solicitor
  • Requesting a redemption statement from your lender and redeeming the mortgage, *if applicable
  • Obtaining the appropriate planning permission, building regulation approval and building completion certificate *if applicable
  • Dealing with enquiries raised by the buyer solicitor
  • Obtaining the NHBC Certificate or other similar warranty for the development, *if applicable
  • Obtaining the re sale pack from the management company and dealing with any enquiries raised by the management company,*if applicable
  • Reporting to you about the property with the contract for signature and supporting documents
  • Preparing the completion such as financial statement and sending funds over you and the lender, *if applicable in respect of the lender.

Estate Administration Costs Information

We understand the importance of being as clear as possible as to the likely costs from the outset when dealing with administering an estate. However, each estate is different and can vary in complexity.

 

It will therefore be necessary for us to speak with you in detail to establish a number of facts first:

 

  1. Whether the Deceased left a valid Will;
  2. The family history or circumstances of the Deceased;
  3. The various assets and liabilities belonging to the Deceased at the date of death;
  4. Any foreign assets the Deceased owned at the date of death;
  5. Whether the Estate is taxable;
  6. The Domicile of the Deceased;
  7. Whether there is a Trust element in the Will or the Deceased benefitted during their lifetime; and
  8. Potential claims against the estate.

The Service Provided

Applying for a Grant of Probate, collecting and distributing all assets and settling liabilities. As part of this service we will:

 

  • Provide you with a professional and experienced probate solicitor to work on your matter
  • Identify the legally appointed Executors or Administrators and beneficiaries
  • Accurately identify the type of probate application that you will require
  • Arrange for posting on the Gazette and the local newspaper
  • Obtain the relevant documents and information required to make the application
  • Complete the Probate application and the relevant HMRC forms
  • Draft the statement of truth or a legal oath for you to swear
  • Submit the relevant IHT forms to HMRC and attend to any inheritance tax due
  • Make the application to the Probate Court on your behalf
  • Obtain the Probate and securely send copies to you
  • Attend to any capital gains tax and income tax liabilities in the estate
  • Collect all assets in the estate, settle any liabilities and distribute the assets

Timescales

Timescales Based on our experience, the following estimates are a useful guide as to the various timeframes depending on the complexity of your matter:

 

  • A straightforward estate with no property to sell and a single bank account may take as little as 3 months.
  • The majority of estates in England and Wales take around 9 – 12 months after probate has been granted.
  • Straightforward estates where there is an inheritance tax liability will usually take between 12 – 18 months.
  • Executors or Administrators can place a notice in the Gazette and local papers to ensure there are no creditors or beneficiaries of the estate. The minimum time subsequently given for people to come forward is 3 months.
  • The sale of a property can cause delays to the administration. Another common cause of delay is a missing beneficiary.
  • In addition, dealing with certain foreign assets can extend the timeframe significantly.
  • If a dispute arises in the estate, or is threatened to arise, the Executors or Administrators should not distribute or wind up the estate. The administration must be delayed while the Executors or Administrators attend to the claim.

Basis of Fixed Fees

We prefer to provide our clients with fixed costs, where possible, to ensure transparency and scope for financial planning from the outset. We will therefore offer you a choice of fee structure: whether that be fixed or on an hourly rate.

The fee is payable by the estate. However, we will require some costs to be paid on account, such as those to cover expenses and disbursements. Typically, the cost of obtaining probate or, in the case of intestacy, letters of administration for an estate following death will range from £2,500 plus VAT for a straightforward matter to £30,000 plus VAT for a complex matter.

The above are approximates and there may be occasions where an estate will be too complex to warrant fixed fees (for example, there may be complicated trust interests, complex claims for gifts out of income, complex debt structures, foreign assets, domicile issues, etc).

Basis of our Charges

We will confirm the fee-earners’ hourly rates along with an estimate of the range of fee you may be expected to pay based on your specific matter and instructions. Please note, we will charge £350 plus VAT per hour for each hour engaged on your matter by our Head of Private Client. Hourly rates are reviewed each year.

 

The Head of Private Client may be assisted by others in the team, or other members of the firm. The current hourly rates of our solicitors are as follows:

 

Managing Partner/Solicitor – £450.00 plus VAT per hour

Partner/Solicitor – £350.00 plus VAT per hour

Assistant Solicitor – £250.00 plus VAT per hour

Trainee Solicitors/Paralegals – £150.00 plus VAT per hour

 

Routine letters or emails that we write and receive, and routine calls that we make and receive will be charged as units of 1/10th of an hour. Other letters, emails and calls will be charged on a time basis. If your instructions require us to work outside normal office hours, we reserve the right to increase the level of the hourly rates. You will be notified in writing of any increased rate.

 

In addition to the time spent, we may consider a number of factors which include:

 

  1. The complexity of the issues;
  2. The speed at which action must be taken;
  3. The expertise or specialist knowledge which the case requires; and
  4. If appropriate and applicable, the value of the property or subject matter involved.

 

We expect these factors to be adequately covered by the hourly rates set out above. The rates may be higher if, for example, the matter becomes more complex than expected. We will, of course, notify you of this immediately.

Third Party Expenses

In addition to our own fees, it will often be necessary to incur the fees of third parties. Typically, these will include the following:

 

  • Probate application fee of £155* fee (plus additional costs for office copies of the Grant) (no VAT)
  • Oath fee – £5 plus £2 for exhibit (e.g. Will) (no VAT)
  • Bankruptcy only searches at Land Charges Department; £2 per search (no VAT)
  • Section 27 of the Trustee Act 1925 Notice fees, in the region of £100 -250 plus VAT

 

*Please note that the Government have announced an increase to probate court fees. These will be banded in line with the value of the estate passing under the Grant and are set to be as follows:

 

Estate’s value Fee
Up to £50,000 £0
£50,000 – £300,000 £250
£500,000 – £1m £2,500
£1m – £1.6m £4,000
£1.6m – £2m £5,000
Above £2m £6,000

 

The Fixed Fee Scale assumes:

 

  • There is a valid Will
  • There are no disputes between the beneficiaries on the division of assets. If disputes arise this is likely to lead to an increase in costs
  • There are no claims made against the estate
  • There are no foreign assets involved in the Estate
  • There are no missing beneficiaries

Potential Additional Costs

Including but not limited to the following factors may increase costs and cause delays to the estate, both in relation to fixed fee and hourly rate matters, the list below is not:

 

  • A missing or damaged Will
  • Disputes with/by beneficiaries
  • Probate becomes contentious
  • Failure to locate a beneficiary
  • The death or incapacity of an Executor
  • Dispute with HMRC or the District Valuer in relation to a property’s probate value
  • Loss of share certificates
  • Assisting with the sale of a property
  • Significant capital gains made by the estate incurring Capital Gains tax liabilities
  • Dealing with overseas / foreign assets and possible double taxation issues
  • Estates with multiple beneficiaries (e.g. more than 10, including or not including charities)
  • The variation of a Will by a Deed of Variation
  • Preparation of multiple tax returns
  • Investigations launched against the estate by the Department for Work and Pensions

 

We will be able to provide you with a more bespoke estimate once we had a chance to discuss your matter in more detail with you. However, where you opt for fees based on an hourly rate typically the average cost may exceed the fixed fee options available.

 

We always provide all our clients with a fee estimate at the start of each new matter, therefore if you would like a bespoke estimate for your particular matter please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss.

 

We assure you that should your case does have unexpected complications, we will always inform you, including any additional fees that may apply, so that you can make an informed decision as to how to proceed.

Debt Recovery Transparency

At RHJ Devonshire Solicitors we are transparent in our costs in all the work we do for our clients. In this page we set our costs for our commercial debt recovery work in relation to debt claims up to the value of £100,000.00 where the debtor is located within England and Wales. If your debt claim is above £100,000.00 our professional fees for acting on such a matter is available on request.

 

Our costs below relate to unpaid invoices that are not disputed. If the other party disputes your claim  at  any  point, we  will  discuss any further  work  required  and  provide  you  with a  revised advice  about  costs,  which  could  be  on  a  fixed fee (e.g. if a one off letter is required), or an hourly rate if more extensive work is needed.

Stage One - Pre-Action

Taking client instructions, reviewing evidence, undertaking appropriate searches, drafting a letter before claim in compliance with the Practice Direction on Pre-Action Conduct, and reviewing the debtor’s response.

 

In the letter before action we request the debtor to respond within 14-30 days. If the case is complex the deadline for responding can be extended to 90 days.

Stage Two – Issuing Legal Proceedings

There are two methods of filing a claim. The first is through the online court service, Money Claim Online (MCOL).

 

The second option is to file a claim directly with the county court.

 

Filing a claim through MCOL attracts a cheaper court issue fee compared to filing a claim with the court by post.

 

The table below shows the difference in the court issue fees.

 

Debt Value Court Fee (MCOL) Court Fee (County Court)
Up to £300.00 £25.00 35.00
Between £300.01-£500.00 £35.00 50.00
Between £500.01 – £1,000.00 £60.00 70.00
Between £1,000.01 – £1,500.00 £70.00 £80.00
Between £1,500.01 – £3,000.00 £105.00 £115.00
Between £3,000.01 – £5,000.00 £185.00 £205.00
Between £5,000.01 – £10,000.00 £410.00 £455.00
Between £10,000.01 – £100,000.00 4.5% of the value of the claim 5% of the value of the claim
Between £100,000.01 – £200,00.00 N/A 5% of the value of the claim
Greater than £200,000.00 N/A £10,000.00

Time Scale

Once the claim has been served, the debtor will have 14 days to acknowledge receipt of the proceedings. The debtor will indicate how they propose to deal with the claim when acknowledging service: (i) admit to the claim, (ii) defend all the claim, (iii) defend part of the claim.  If the debtor decides they will be defending the claim (whether in its entirety or in part), they may elect to file and serve their defence within 28 days from receipt of service of the claim.

 

If the debtor fails to file their defence within the requisite time-frame we can apply to the court to enter judgment against the debtor. Once judgment is given we can write to the debtor seeking payment of the judgment sum. In the event that the debtor does not make payment, we can apply to court to enforce the judgment with a view to recovering the judgment sum.

 

It is difficult to predict how long the process will take. If the matter is resolved under stage one, the process will take between 4-12 weeks before settlement. In the event that the claim proceeds to stage 2, the process could take an additional 3-9 months before settlement.

 

If the matter becomes contested, or the debtor fails to pay the judgment sum we can provide you with advice on the next steps involved, the estimated fees and timeframe.

Our Fees

Our fees will primarily be based on the time spent in carrying out your instructions. The hourly rates of our solicitors and legally trained staff are as follows:

 

 

Level Rate (exclusive of VAT)
Partners Between £350.00 to £450.00 per hour
Solicitors Between £250.00 to £350.00 per hour
Paralegals/Trainees From £150.00 per hour

 

Our likely costs for obtaining settlement or judgment for an undisputed claim for a debt under £100,00.00 are as follows:

 

Stage 1: £1,000.00 – £1,750.00

Stage 2: £1,750.00 – £3,000.00

 

Disbursements are payments made to third parties in the course of the provision of our services. In a straightforward debt claim, where settlement is not disputed, the only likely disbursements would include the court fees, which is only payable if court action is required.