Home / The Rix & Kay Blog / HMRC Revises Probate Application Procedure
Jessica Pointing

Solicitor - East Sussex (Uckfield)

25th January 2024

HMRC Revises Probate Application Procedure

From 17 January 2024, those applying for probate in England and Wales are no longer required to submit an IHT421 Probate Summary with the Form IHT400.

Prior to this change, applicants were required to send an IHT421 alongside the IHT400 to HMRC who would then complete and send the IHT421 directly to HM Courts and Tribunal Service (HMCTS). Applicants had to wait 20 working days from submitting the IHT400 to HMRC before submitting the probate application to HMCTS. If a probate application was submitted before the 20 working days had passed, the application would be ‘stopped’ which would delay the application from being processed.

Following the change, applicants should now submit the IHT400 to HMRC and then wait for HMRC to send them an acknowledgement letter that will include a unique code and the gross and net value of the estate.  These details should then be used to register the probate application with the HM Courts and Tribunal Services’ online portal. Probate applications that do not contain the code will not be accepted by HMCTS. This therefore removes the ability for applications to be submitted prematurely.

One of the main reasons given by HMRC for the change was to reduce the number of premature probate applications (i.e. applications submitted where the applicant has not waited the required 20 working days). This caused delays, not only to the individual applications but also to HMCTS generally as ‘stopped’ applications build up within the system.  HMRC estimated that around 9,000 of the “stops” in 2022 were due to applications being submitted at the incorrect time.

This change simplifies the application process as applicants now have one less form to complete, and should also help to reduce delays.

Contact Us

If you require any guidance or assistance with the probate process, please contact Jessica Pointing, a solicitor on our Private Client team, on e. jessicapointing@rixandkay.co.uk or t. 01825 745361.