It can feel like there’s a lot to keep track of when applying for probate, but we’re here to make it simpler. This page will:

  • explain what you do and don’t need your local probate registry office for (see ‘Which probate registry do I apply to?’ and ‘Do I need to know my local probate registry?).
  • point you towards an online probate registry search tool (see ‘Where is my nearest probate office?’).
  • offer some useful phone numbers (see ‘Probate office telephone numbers’).

The advice here applies to England and Wales. If you’re in Scotland, we have a guide to getting a certificate of confirmation. The nidirect government website offers guidance on applying for probate in Northern Ireland.

 

Which probate registry do I apply to?

If you’re applying for probate within England and Wales, you should send your probate application form to HM Courts and Tribunals Service, rather than to your nearest probate office. The address is:

HMCTS Probate

PO Box 12625

Harlow

CM20 9QE

 

Do I need to know my local probate registry?

You don’t necessarily need to know where your local probate office is when applying for probate. The main steps of probate application can be carried out without involving your local office. For example:

  • Inheritance tax is paid to HMRC, not to a probate office. The government offers advice on inheritance tax payment here.
  • These forms can be sent to HMCTS Probate; the address is above.
  • The £215 probate registration fee for estates over £5,000 can be paid by post; you can just include a cheque made out to HMCTS when you post your application form.

This means it’s possible to apply for probate without contacting your local office at all.

However, there are a few situations in which you might find your nearest probate registry office helpful:

  • You want to speak with your local probate registry directly for probate advice.
  • You can’t print the probate forms from the government website and want to request physical copies. In this case, you can request the forms from your closest probate office.
  • You want to pay the probate registration fee over the phone, using a credit or debit card. In this case, you’ll need to call your nearest probate registry office before you post your application form. Once you’ve paid over the phone, you’ll be given a reference number to put on the first page of the form.

 

Where is my nearest probate office?

The easiest way to find a probate office is to use the UK government’s court and tribunal finder. Just enter your postcode into this online probate registry search and it’ll list your most local probate registry offices, with the closest at the top.

The court and tribunal finder will return the probate office locations and e-mail addresses of each probate office, but the phone number it offers for each office (0300 123 1072) is HMRC’s probate and inheritance tax helpline, rather than being specific to the individual probate office. You can’t use this number to pay your probate registration fee. Because of this, we’ve listed the phone numbers to call for individual probate offices below.

 

Probate office telephone numbers

Brighton, Cardiff, Liverpool, Oxford, Newcastle and Winchester’s probate registry offices offer a ‘pay probate registration fee by phone’ service. Here are the phone numbers to call for each office. The lines are open from 9.30am to 3pm, Monday to Friday.

Not all probate offices let you pay by phone. If your closest match isn’t included in this list, look down through your search results to find the closest office that is.

 

Brighton Probate Registry

01273 573512

 

Cardiff Probate Registry of Wales

01273 573512

 

Liverpool Probate Registry

0151 224 6501

 

Oxford Probate Registry

01865 264268

 

Newcastle-upon-Tyne Probate Registry

0191 211 2183

 

Winchester Probate Registry

01962 814145

 

How can Beyond help?

If you’re having trouble with any aspect of probate, we can offer free advice if you call us on 0800 054 9896. We also have a range of fixed-fee probate services.

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