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Coronavirus (COVID-19)


Probate, confirmation and coronavirus

In this section you'll find information and updates related to coronavirus that are relevant to the law on probate and confirmation.

The UK's response to coronavirus is changing regularly and often very quickly. While we'll continue to make every effort to keep this page up to date, there may be short periods where what you read here is not the latest information available. Where possible we've tried to provide links to official sources, so you can check the current situation.

Inheritance tax

On 9 April 2020, HMRC announced a number of process changes as a result of the pandemic, including payment of inheritance tax and signing the related forms.

Probate applications

In England and Wales, probate applications are still being processed, but are taking longer than usual.

In Northern Ireland, no new grants are being issued until further notice unless it is urgent, in which case the reasons must be clearly specified in writing.

Confirmation applications

In Scotland, Sheriff courts are currently only dealing with urgent and necessary civil business during the lockdown period. Applications for confirmation are not included on the Scottish Courts & Tribunal Service list of urgent and necessary business. Applications for confirmation are, therefore, generally on hold.

What is the law guide

The Desktop Lawyer law guide aims to present the law to you in a comprehensive yet jargon-free and easy-to-read format. Our law guide is constantly kept up to date with changes in business and family law by our team of in house solicitors, and includes information across all the legal jurisdictions in the UK.

Our law guide is free to use. Where we provide documents related to this area of law, or where they may help you with any legal issue in this area, they will be listed to the right of this message.