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No Will, no Probate - accessing funds after death


Registered User
Dec 26, 2015
I want to highlight this in case people are not aware. It could save someone some serious money!

I have been looking after mum's financial affairs with PoA during her dementia. After she passed on Monday, I made some calls early Tuesday to keep myself busy. One was to her bank where she had two accounts - a current account which her pension and benefits went into, and another, an ISA, with a few thousand in it.

Mum did not make a Will (it's just me left, I didn't feel a requirement). I was already planning to do DIY Probate to sort her accounts. But, when I called the Bereavement Team at the bank, they advised me that for small amounts, there was no need for Probate. Now, I appreciate that mine is a simple case - it's just me. I was asked about the existence of a Will and said there wasn't one. They froze mum's accounts and advised me to call again once I was in possession of the Death Certificate. I was driving around yesterday and had an idle moment in the car and had their number and had the DC with me. I called them. They asked for a few more details, in particular some information from the DC - and then said within three days the accounts would be closed and funds transfer to my account (also at same bank).

I'm not sure what the situation would have been if she'd left a Will, but if anyone is ever in the same boat, please speak to the financial institutions first. I can't believe how easy this was. In fact it was a lot easier than getting the paperwork signed at the hospital! I did mention several times that it would be useful for me to use some of these funds for her funeral costs, so not sure if that made any difference, but I am surprised how easy the whole process was. It makes sense to me - at least I didn't waste any money on legal advice or costly, lengthy legal processes.


Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
When my husbands bachelor brother died in 2008 our experience was the same. Produce death cert and sign to accept responsibility for funds in accounts or words to that effect and all was transferred. I think below a certain amount they keep it simple. Worth checking first as you say.


Registered User
Jan 28, 2011
With my mum it was the same. The bank allowed the bills for the funeral & the wake to go directly to them & they were paid that way.

Lin x


Registered User
Jan 26, 2017
Mums was the same for one bank but the other insisted on probate so it depends on the amount and the bank. It took about 6 months with the one bank, and now 9 months on, it's the shares mum held that are taking ages . Mum had a will so the executor did all the form filling.