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Probate Fees

Volume 436: debated on Tuesday 15 April 1947

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Finally, in this section, I have an announcement to make in respect of Probate Fees, following up the exemption last year of small estates from Estate Duty. Probate fees are prescribed not by legislation, but by Order of the Supreme Court. Following discussions which the Lord Chancellor has had with His Majesty's Judges, I am glad to have been able to agree to a new scale of Probate fees as from 1st May. The minimum grant fee of 15s., now applying to estates up to £200, will, in future, apply to all estates up to £2,000. There will also be some reduction in the fee on estates up to £6,000. The new scale is to be calculated on the net value of the estate, including realty, and there will be some adjustment of the scale for estates above £6,000. The charge for services in the Personal Application Department on estates up to £2,000, and the jurisdiction of the Customs and Excise officers, are unaffected by this arrangement. It is not a big matter, but I am glad to think that the new scale of fees will mean a small saving in legal expenses to poor people, and the total loss of revenue from the new arrangement is only about £20,000 a year.