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The government's controversial proposal to increase probate fees from the current fixed fee of £215 (or £155 if applying through a solicitor) to fees of £250 to £6,000 has been scrapped.

Justice Secretary Robert Buckland, who has abandoned the plans which were due to come into force next year, said "While fees are necessary to properly fund our world-leading courts system, they must be fair and proportionate. We will withdraw these proposals, and keep the current system while we take a closer look at these court fees as part of our annual wider review."

The fee rise was due to take place in April 2019 causing an increase in probate applications in March. This coincided with a new system and has resulted in a backlog of applications and delays of up to 13 weeks for grants of probate to be issued. Previously you could expect a grant of probate to be issued within 3 weeks.

The probate registries are continuing to deal with the backlog and are processing applications in date order. The Law Society has pledged to keep fighting the backlog.

If you require any further advice on this, please contact Chattertons Wills, Trusts and Probate team.