Fixed Price Legal Services
Fergusson Law is delighted to offer a range of cost-effective fixed price legal services for our private client services. We appreciate that any legal issue can prove to be a stressful and expensive time and that clients prefer to have certainty on costs whenever possible. It is, therefore, our policy that you should always know in advance how much it will cost to carry out the work agreed.
What is a fixed fee?
A fixed fee is simply that – a fee that is fixed. All that must be added to the prices below is VAT (currently 20%) payable to HMRC. Our fee is an agreed amount paid for a piece of work. We agree with you what work is needed, what we will charge to carry out that work and when our fee will be paid. This way you can be sure about what we will do for you and how much it will cost. We will confirm our no-obligation fixed price after an initial meeting.
There are situations which may arise which are unforeseen and which involve additional work. On these occasions, our clients are told immediately and no further work is carried out on that matter until a further fee has been agreed.
For a fixed fee of £720 we will check the title when the property is marketed by your Agent, manage initial transactions and source all documentation relating to your home. We will then negotiate the contract on your behalf with the buyer’s solicitor. We will draw up purchase and sale contract letters of negotiation, referred to as missives.
Property transfers , both selling and buying, involve Disbursements to third parties for reports, registrations and searches etc.. These are extra but we can tell you the likely amounts. VAT is not included in our prices
The missives will set a fixed date of entry which both parties are expected to work towards. After the conclusion of missives we will manage the paperwork involved in the legal transfer of the property to your buyer.
Our fixed fees include identifying and valuing the deceased’s assets and liabilities, drawing up an inventory of the estate, and completing the documentation required to apply for Confirmation, submitting the Inheritance Tax Return and arranging payment of any inheritance tax due, ingathering the deceased’s estate, paying any debts, and distributing in accordance with the deceased’s wishes or the laws of intestacy, drawing up an account and finalising the executry tax affairs. The basic fee is £2,750 which may be adjusted upwards or downwards, by agreement, at our first consultation. This consultation is free and with no obligation.
Some estates will need a full Inheritance tax return but no tax will be payable . Our fee in this case will be from £4,000 . But again it may be changed , by agreement, at our first consultation.
The basic fee for an estate where Inheritance tax is payable is £7,000 ; Our first consultation will establish any estate complexities which may affect this fee. This consultation, and fixed fee quotation, is free and with no obligation.
The scope of work covered by the fixed fee comprises the administration of an estate which proceeds normally. Exclusions apply to non-standard work, such as contentious matters, which will be explained to you before you accept the quote. There may be cash outlays to external parties, such as Estate Agents and money transfer charges, in addition. These will be explained to you at our first, free, consultation.
If the executry involves complex business or property ownership issues (especially overseas) , please contact us for a tailored quote.
We will meet you and learn about your circumstances. After agreeing with you a form of Will that is suitable for your circumstances, we will take your instructions and prepare your Will, which will appoint Executors, dispose of all your assets, and where appropriate, appoint guardians for minor children. We then arrange for you to sign the Will, after which we will provide you with a copy and store the signed original for you. This £250 fixed fee service does not cover the creation of Trusts. Nor the giving of specific inheritance tax advice. For a couple doing Wills together our fee is discounted for the two wills.
We can provide certified copies of up to 3 original documents for £45 plus VAT. Notarised Declarations will cost £100 plus VAT because legal advice is required. A Foreign Office Apostille is a further £75 plus VAT but there will be disbursements of about £35 payable to the FCO which will be quoted at cost.
You may want advice on a will specifically designed to preserve assets. . For a fee which we will agree with you in advance we will establish your inheritance tax position, discuss the implications for your circumstances, and provide advice on any action available to you to mitigate your inheritance tax liability. We will also advise on reducing the impact on your assets of nursing or care home fees.
For a lifetime Trust, this includes establishing that a Trust is suitable in your circumstances, ensuring that you are aware of the tax consequences (inheritance, capital gains and income) drafting and arranging signature of the Trust Deed, drawing up the Inheritance Tax Return required in relation to the gift into the Trust, and preparing up to five capital gains tax hold over elections as required (an additional fee would be agreed in advance if there are more).
Please note that this £1000 fee does not include the following:
- the transfer of heritable property, i.e. houses and land, into the Trust
- any Deeds of Gift between spouses or other parties associated with the formation
Will Trusts involve the same work as above, except that the instrument establishing the Trust is likely to be a Deed of Variation to the deceased’s Will.
Although not legally binding, Living Will documents are a very useful way of making sure that your wishes regarding medical intervention are taken into account in the event that your position is terminal but you are no longer able to express your views yourself. We will draw up the document, arrange signature and store the original on your behalf, providing you with copies to give to your GP and close family members. The fixed fee is £150.
We specialise in the ongoing administration of family trusts. The annual fee will be between £750 and £1500 depending on the type of trust. Our work includes the collection and distribution of income, distributions of capital which do not require an Inheritance Tax Return, preparing an annual Trust account for the Trustees’ approval, providing ad hoc legal advice as requested by the Trustees, liaison with the Trust investment or property manager, dealing with the Trust tax return, and up to one change of Trustee per annum.
Power of Attorney
We will meet you and learn about your circumstances. After confirming that a Power of Attorney is appropriate in your circumstances, we will prepare the documentation, which can be either a Continuing (financial) Power of Attorney or a Welfare Power of Attorney, or a Power of Attorney combining both sets of powers. We will then certify that you have the capacity to grant a Power of Attorney, arrange signature, and register with the Office of the Public Guardian in Scotland. Please note that the registration fee (currently about £70 for both together) is not included in the fee quoted. A Scottish Power of Attorney is £300.
We can also draw up English Powers of Attorney for clients who consider themselves to be resident in England, or intend to return there permanently in the foreseeable future. The price for this service includes preparation of the documentation, arranging signature by all parties concerned and arranging registration with the Office of the Public Guardian. Please note that the registration fee (currently about £110 for each or £220 for both) is not included in the fee quoted. An English Power of Attorney is £300.
Winding up a Trust
We offer a fixed fee of £1,000 for winding up either a Liferent Trust or a Discretionary Trust.
Our fixed fee of £1,000 includes the provision of advice on the tax implications of winding up the Trust, drawing up the relevant documentation, completing a closing Trust account, submitting an Inheritance Tax Return as required, finalising the Trust tax affairs, distributing the Trust capital among the beneficiaries and arranging a discharge for the Trustees.
Guardianship applications involve a formal court process with reports from social workers, psychiatrists and other specialists. The £5,500 fee for this service includes arranging the necessary reports, drawing up the required documentation and making an application to the court. A further fixed fee will be agreed if the court requires further information and/or there is a second court appearance before approving the order.
Our Fixed Fees
|Living Will (Advance Directive)||£150|
|Scottish Power of Attorney||£300|
|English Power of Attorney||£300|
|Application for Guardianship or Intervention Order|
A discount applies to the total where a couple take out Wills or Powers of Attorney at the same time.
|No Inheritance Tax (IHT), short form of IHT Return||£2,750 to £4,000|
|Long IHT Return required but no tax payable||£4,000 to £5,500|
|Estate liable to Inheritance Tax||£7,000 to £10,000|
We will confirm our no-obligation fixed price, and any outlays to external parties, after an initial free meeting.
|Certifying a true copy (up to 3 documents)||£45|
|Declarations not requiring legal advice||£45|
|Declarations requiring legal advice||£100|
|Arranging an Apostille||£75|
|Trust Formation (Lifetime Trust)||£1000|
|Trust Administration – Annual Fee||£750 to £1500|
|Winding up a Trust||£1000|
|Legal work associated with selling a property||£720|
Legal work associated with buying a property
|Acting for the lender where there is a mortgage loan||£185|
- Please read the description of the work covered by the fee, which sets out what is covered and what is not. VAT is not included.
- If you do not consider the proposed fee meets your circumstances (e.g. you do not require the full service included in the cost or require additional work), please speak to us, so that we can quote a tailored fee.
- Disbursements are not included but we can guide you as to likely amounts. VAT is not included in our prices.