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Can a solicitor charge to release the original copy of a will to the executor?

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  • Can a solicitor charge to release the original copy of a will to the executor?

    My father-in-law passed away last week and my husband is the executor of his will. We have located a photocopy of the will and from that have found the solicitors who he made the will through and they have confirmed that they do have the original copy.

    However, today, my husband rang the solicitors to arrange collection of the will, as he now had the death certificate, only to be told they will be charging £400 to release it.

    I have executed 2 estates over the years and don't remember having to pay to obtain the original copy of either will. I also cannot believe the extortionate cost they want to charge just for my husband to collect a few pieces of paper.

    Can anyone help with this - is this usual? Can the solicitors charge to release the will? Has anyone had to pay 100s to get an original copy of a will just to be able to apply for probate and execute the will?
    Tags: None

  • #2
    What you do is just collect. They have to deal with your enquiry, check to see if they have it, find it out, prepare a receipt, attend you collecting it,and update their records.

    Even so, the amount you require seems well over the top.

    Comment


    • #3
      Ask them if they would like to have to explain the charge to the SRA.
      Lawyer - retired from practice, now in academia. I do not advise by PM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by atticus View Post
        Ask them if they would like to have to explain the charge to the SRA.
        Thank you for this great piece of advice.

        Can I just ask - are you saying that they shouldn't be charging (or that it's unusual for a solicitor to charge) or is it that solicitors do normally charge for this, just not such a large amount?

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by dslippy View Post
          What you do is just collect. They have to deal with your enquiry, check to see if they have it, find it out, prepare a receipt, attend you collecting it,and update their records.

          Even so, the amount you require seems well over the top.
          Thank you. I think it isn't the "shock" of being charged something (though I really don't remember having to pay to get the originals of my grandfather's or mother's wills when they passed but it was 10+ years ago), more that the charge was so much.

          Comment


          • #6
            I would say both, but the amount quoted is eye wateringly exorbitant.
            Lawyer - retired from practice, now in academia. I do not advise by PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              It now turns out (after my husband spoke to the solicitors again this morning) that the fee is actually for the solicitor to renounce their role as executors.

              This still seems extortionate to us considering my husband is already the named executor of the will (along with the partners of the solicitors) so nothing is being changed, it's just that my husband is willing to "do the job" and doesn't need them.

              Do they really need to renounce themselves if my husband is already a named executor (and presume the solicitors were added as more of a backup)?

              And, again, does this price seem over the top?

              Comment


              • #8
                They do need to renounce, and the fee is not extortionate.

                Comment


                • #9
                  So this is not just for handing over the Will. My last firm would not charge to renounce. And I think £400 is excessive (sorry to disagree)..
                  Lawyer - retired from practice, now in academia. I do not advise by PM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    It's ok.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      We didnít have to pay for my late Motherís solicitor to renounce.

                      Comment

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