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Equiniti Warns Public To Guard Against New Probate Fee ‘Tax Traps’ As Estate Values Soar

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Rising estate values in the UK and changes to end-of-life taxation demonstrate the importance for people entering later-life to ensure they are fully prepared for bereavement

In the wake of Government’s confirmation that probate fees will increase from April 2019, Equiniti Benefactor, the end-of-life services brand, is advising the public to get their end-of-life admin in order now to minimise the unnecessary loss of wealth and assets at the point of bereavement.

The warning comes as Equiniti Benefactor’s research shows that the average UK estate value held by those with Identified Wealth has soared to  £314,7001 a rise in value of 9% (£25,000) between 2011-13 and 2014-16. 

Significant wealth is also held by retirees, with four in 10 (38%) of those aged over 65 owning an estate worth over £200,0002. 

Stuart Simpson, Head of Equiniti Benefactor, said:

“The changes to probate fees now mean that those with the highest property wealth will be paying nearly £6,000 more on these administrative charges. To avoid this, we urge you to get your end-of-life admin in shape now.

“The combination of increased probate fees and rising estate values should prompt the public to take the issue of what will happen to their assets upon death more seriously.

“We know handling an estate when you’re bereaved is difficult – preparation and professional advice for those thinking about their legacy will help them to navigate ‘tax traps’. Using major life events, for example marriage or childbirth, always provides an opportune time for people to assess their estate and how they would like it to be dealt in the case of bereavement.” 

Equiniti’s analysis of the ONS statistics also shows the rapid rise has been driven by spiralling property values since the turn of the millennium. Property now contributes over £219,000 to average estate values, up from £185,000 three years ago and from just £120,000 in 2001-03. 

 “With the average value of estates now close to a third of a million pounds, and often including family property, those with high value properties will feel the biggest impact from how probate fees are charged after April 2019,” Stuart said. 

“Baby boomers are the first generation that are more likely to own a property than to rent it, and so property wealth is becoming an increasingly integral asset in inheritance.

“Again, our advice is simple. Get advice, get planning and make sure that you are ahead of the game to give you and your loved one’s peace of mind that the bereavement process will run smoothly and as per the wishes of the deceased.” 



For more information:

Temple Bar Advisory

William Barker / Sam Livingstone
Tel: 078 2796 0151 / 077 6965 5437
Email: /


Notes to Editor:


  1. Identified personal wealth: assets by year
  2. Identified personal wealth: estate size by age and gender

About Equiniti

Equiniti Group plc is a FTSE-listed share services and fintech business, delivering technology-enabled solutions to some of the world’s best-known brands and UK’s largest public-sector organisations.  

It is the UK’s leading provider of share registration, employee share plans, and associated investor services, and also has market leading positions in pension administration and software, and employee benefit schemes. 

Equiniti’s services, which are delivered by over 5,000 employees, benefit 28 million people in the UK and 120 countries around the world.

Equiniti Benefactor receives approximately 1,000 notifications of death on an average day, which equates to around 50% of the total number of deaths in the UK each year and manages around 500 estates per year, distributing over £335 million of assets and supporting over 1,200 beneficiaries.