For anyone who is bereaved or no longer providing care.
Who's the executor, or are you both executors?

As for the household bills, can't you just forward them to her? And send her the keys to the house, and wash your hands of it?

I'll ask my lawyer chum for any info on who actually has to do what. I know that executors of wills do have legal obligations, but not sure what happens if both children are executors, and one drags their heels. I know I dragged my heel on something to do with my father's will, and my brother nagged me, but that was decades ago. I think I just did it in the end (it was signing something or other.)

Maybe your sister doesn't want closure, and enjoys keeping you hanging around, knowing it annoys you and inconveniences you....
Maybe your sister doesn't want closure, and enjoys keeping you hanging around, knowing it annoys you and inconveniences you....
Yes, that's exactly it.
I wonder if there's a legal time limit on getting probate done after a death? If she's the sole executor, that might pressure her a bit! If you're joint executors, not so sure?

All the best anyway, in a not-very-pleasant situation.
Hiya Jenny, I am a bit confused...You said when your husband passed away you had to go through probate....we were told by our solicitor when my mum passed away (.the estate goes to probate when the remaining spouse passes away! Why did you go through Probate xx
I went through probate when my OH died, due to the value of the estate, although I was the sole beneficiary. It was all dealt with by the solicitor, my choice to make sure everything was done properly to avoid any later repurcussions.
Hi, I realise this discussion is a little old now, but I wondered if anyone knew whether I needed probate? My mother passed away a couple of months ago and had a house (worth about £350k), a little cash and some a few debts. She left everything to me and my brother.

Do I need probate and will I need a solicitor? I read a probate guide ( and took the probate quiz on the page and it seems to say I need probate and will need to do an inheritance tax return. Is this right? If so, how much will solicitors fees be do you think? Sorry for all the questions, I'm very new to all this :-???
Be wary of recent changes in Probate fees : ... door-36309

Yes you will need probate.

the current threshold for exemption from inheritance tax is £325,000- anything over that will be charged at 40%. So in your case IHT is payable on £25,000.

It's worth noting that when declaring the value of your Mum's estate the Probate Office is only interested in the value of the property itself, savings accounts and any very high value assets (i.e. sports cars,high end jewellery, antique furniture etc) they aren't interested in (what amounts to) 2nd hand furniture and clothes.

If your Mum inherited from your Father she probably didn't have to pay any IHT (spousal exemption), in that case you should be able to claim a 'double' exemption (I.e. £650,000) so it would be worthwhile either speaking to the Probate Office or a Solicitor. I did use a solicitor when applying for Probate for Mum's estate and because of the above we didn't have to pay any IHT. I can't remember what the Solicitors fees were now (it was back in 2012) but I do remember ringing round a few and getting their standard charges.

You can download the probate forms from the .GOV website You can also get help completing the forms from the Probate Office.
Nice post and thanks for sharing.