News story: Personal applicants can now apply for probate online


HMCTS details how personal applicants can now apply for probate using new online service.

The Probate Service is now accepting online applications from personal applicants based on the criteria below:

  1. Only one executor is applying
  2. There is an original will available and the person who died did not leave an update to the will (codicil)
  3. The person who has died classed England and Wales as their permanent home or intended to return to England and Wales to live permanently

The online application form will continue to be developed to cover a broader range of probate applications in the future.

What the new online application provides

The new online application form includes:

  • a new statement of truth for you to declare that the information provided is correct, which removes the need for you to swear an oath in person
  • The function to pay the fee online removing the need to post a cheque to the Probate Service
  • A ‘save and return’ function allows you to save and revisit an application if you need to find further information. This allows a part finished application to be saved and completed later.

Online applications will be extended for solicitors and other professionals to apply later in 2017.

What is required in order to submit an online application?

The online application form is easier to understand but you will still be required to provide supporting documents as per the current process. These are:

  • The original will and two photocopies
  • The death certificate
  • The associated inheritance tax forms and figures
  • Any other supporting documents relevant to the case (e.g. a renunciation form)

We are looking to enhance this in the future, potentially through links with other departments to gather this information automatically as part of the process.

If you meet the criteria and would like to apply online please contact the HMRC helpline who can provide you with the details to apply online.

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