Unfortunately, we like all law firms are continuing to experience long delays with applications for Grants of Probate. In our experience applications are continuing to take at least eight to twelve weeks to be processed.
The probate registries have explained that these long delays have been caused by a combination of the large volumes of applications submitted ahead of the planned increases to the probate fees, a new online probate application process (which has come with various IT glitches), and finally, insufficient resources at the probate registries to deal with the backlogs.
HMCTS have advised that applications are being dealt with in date order. They will not expedite applications considered by applicants to be “urgent” (e.g. if there is a property sale pending that is dependent on the grant). HMCTS have further advised that is not wise to telephone the probate registry to chase them – this will only slow them down further, and they will not expedite the application.
We are continuing to progress files where possible but we must advise that all Probate transactions are being affected and not individual matters.