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Bereavement support

When you’ve lost someone close to you, organising their finances can seem daunting. We’re here to provide practical help to take you through the process from start to finish.

Step by step

Before you get started it’s important to understand how much you’ll pay in charges, and to familiarise yourself with some of the legal terms which we will explain in more detail.


    • Dealing commission (per stock) £12.50 (sales only)
    • Withdrawal of stock onto a certificate £25 per certificate

    How do we take payment?

    Any charges will be taken from the share dealing account where possible, however where there isn’t an available balance to pay some, or all of the charges, we’ll contact the executor by letter requesting payment by cheque.

    If you’d like to pay any of the charges by cheque please make this payable to Halifax Share Dealing Limited and send to the following address:

    Halifax Share Dealing
    Legal Department
    Lovell Park Road
    Leeds
    LS1 1NS


  • We understand that some of the language or legal phrasing on this page may not make sense to everyone, so we’ve explained these in a little more detail to help.

    • Assets

    Any property or possession which has a cash value.

    • Confirmation

    The laws relating to inheritance and property in Scotland are very different to other parts of the United Kingdom (apart from the taxes that need to be paid on estates). in England this is called probate, in Scotland this is called ‘confirmation’.

    In Scotland, a ‘small estate’ is classed as an estate with a total value of less than £36,000. These can be dealt with by private individuals (such as yourself or family members), although the requirement for confirmation is decided by the company you are dealing with.

    If you need some more support then the staff at the Sheriff Clerk’s office will be able to help personal applicants with the necessary forms and confirmation once all the information needed has been gathered.

    If the estate is larger than £36,000 and, especially if a property is involved, we recommend the use of a solicitor.

    • Current valuation

    A document which confirms the value of the remaining cash and/or stock held within the account at the time of death. The valuation will help the executor to determine if a Grant of Probate or Small Estates Form is required.

    • Death certificate

    A certified copy of the entry made in the Death Register. The registrar will be able, for a fee, to provide a number of certified copies to save time when you’re registering claims with various companies.

    • Distribution of assets

    Distribution of the assets refers to the process of selling assets held within a share dealing account as instructed by the named executor of the account.

    Distribution of the assets can also refer to the executor’s choice to transfer assets held to an account in their own name or the withdrawal of assets onto a certificate.

    • Executor/administrator

    As executor or administrator (executor-nominate or dative in Scotland) you may have responsibility for one or more of the following:

    • Registration of the death
    • Arranging the funeral service
    • Paying urgent expenses i.e. funeral costs
    • Obtaining legal documents (grants)
    • Informing financial organisations such as banks, insurance companies, pensions
    • Listing all the assets and liabilities of the estate
    • Paying any tax liabilities i.e. inheritance tax
    • Appointing trustees if required for beneficiaries of the will
    • Grant of Probate

    A grant of probate is an official document issued by the Probate Registry which the executors may need to administer the estate. This document will only be issued once the Probate Registry has received the necessary application forms from the named executor, the will’s validity has been checked, and any owed taxes are paid.

    If the estate is small, or if it’s held in joint names and passes automatically to the surviving owner (as is often the case with married couples), you may not need to apply for probate.

    If there’s a will, you’ll need to get a Grant of Probate; if there isn’t a will, you’ll need to get Letters of Administration (in Scotland this is called a Grant of Confirmation).

    • Probate

    Probate is the process you go through if you’re handling the estate of someone who has died.

    • The process includes:

    Identifying what’s in the estate and its value.

    Completing the necessary application forms for both the probate registry and Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

    Gathering the assets and dealing with any property, paying any debts and completing the legal processes to cover you against late claims in the estate.

    The same application process has to be made by the administrator of an intestate estate, where there is no will. The grant issued in this situation is called ‘letters of administration’. If there is a will but no executor for any reason, the grant is called ‘letters of administration with will annexed’.

    The responsibilities include making sure all taxes and debts are paid before any money can be given to beneficiaries (the people nominated to benefit from the will) and that in general the estate is managed in a way that best serves the beneficiaries.

    • Rules of intestacy

    When a person dies without leaving a will they are described as dying intestate. Certain legal rules called the intestacy rules will determine how the person’s estate is distributed.

    • Trade

    A deal to buy or sell an investment such as shares.

Step 1 – How to notify us after a bereavement

When an account holder passes away the first thing we’ll need from you is an original or certified copy of the death certificate.

If you’re sending us a certified copy, we can accept these from:

  • A solicitor registered on the official Law Society website.
    Your solicitor will need to note the document with their name, signature and an identifier or reference so that we can find them on the Law Society register.
  • A member of our branch staff
    If the document is certified in a Halifax branch, it must bear the mark of the staff member who saw the original death certificate, their ID number and the official branch stamp.

Ready to send the certificate to us?

Once you’re ready to send the certificate to us, please send it to:

Legal Department
Halifax Share Dealing
Lovell Park Road
Leeds
LS1 1NS

Step 2 – What happens when we receive the death certificate?

Once we’ve received the death certificate we will update the account and issue a letter to the account’s registered address requesting a Grant of Probate (in Scotland this is called a Certificate of Confirmation) or an Executor Authority Form.

This letter will include:

  • a valuation of the account
  • an Executor/Administration Instruction Form

Your next steps once the share dealing accounts have been valued

The share dealing account(s) are valued at less than £50,000 (or £36,000 in Scotland)

If the total value of the share dealing account(s) at date of death was less than £50,000 please download the Executor Authority Form – Small Estates Declaration & Indemnity (PDF). This will allow the primary executor to settle the estate once the Grant of Probate has been registered with us.

If the total value of the share dealing account(s) at date of death was less than £50,000 and a Grant of Probate is not being obtained we can also accept the above form. The Small Estates Declaration & Indemnity section will need to be signed. Please note if the value of the estate at the date of death is more than £5000 then the Small Estates Declaration would need to be countersigned by a solicitor.

Please note that in Scotland, a small estate is classed as an estate with a total value of less than £36,000. Confirmation from the court will be required if the estate is valued above this amount.

Further information can be found on the Scottish Courts Government Website.

The share dealing account(s) are valued at over £50,000 (or £36,000 in Scotland)

Once we’ve received the death certificate we will update the account and issue a letter to the personal representative requesting a Grant of Probate (in Scotland this is called a Certificate of Confirmation) This letter will include a valuation of the account and an Executor Authority Form.

Once we’ve received an Executor Authority Form (PDF) and an original/certified copy of the Grant of Probate (in Scotland this is called a Certificate of Confirmation) we will carry out the requested instructions. We’ll arrange for all correspondence to be issued to the address of the named executor.

Step 3 – What happens after I have sent the instruction forms?

If you’ve requested for us to sell the investments

This will usually be done within 72 hours of receiving the instruction form. Upon settlement in the market we will arrange for the money to be sent by cheque to the executor named on the Executor Authority Form within approximately 10 working days.

If you’ve requested for us to transfer the investments

If you have sent a request to transfer stock to another Halifax Share Dealing account, this usually takes up to 10 working days to complete. Withdrawing stock onto a certificate can take considerably longer.

Please note, you will be unable to transfer shares, withdraw available funds or the proceeds of a sale until the necessary identity and verification checks have been completed. Information about these verification checks can be found on the bereavement guide that will be sent to you in the post.

We will attempt to complete these checks electronically however if this isn’t possible, you’ll need to provide original or certified copies of documents from the below list. You will need to send us one document from the proof of identity list and one document from the proof of address list.
 


  • All documents must be current as we cannot accept expired documentation.

    • Passport - (Passports not from the UK/EU/EEA require a valid visa)

    Or:

    • UK photo driving licence

    Or:

    • Full paper driving licence.
    • EU/EEA driving licence with photograph and signature; this must be issued by a member state of the EU/EEA.
    • Northern Ireland voters card.
    • EEA or equivalent jurisdiction National Identity Card with photograph and signature.
    • UK Benefits / State Pension Notification letter dated within the last 12 months. This must be from an official source i.e. Job Centre Plus, Department for Work and Pensions / Local Authority confirming the rights to a benefit.
    • HM Revenue and Customs Tax Notification issued within the last 12 months. This must be a HMRC Tax Notification i.e. statement of account, notice of coding relating to the current year. We CANNOT accept P45’s or P60’s.
    • UK Blue Disabled Drivers Pass. This must contain passport sized photo, name, signature, expiry date and issuer details.
    • Biometric Residence Permit issued by Home Office.
    • Firearms certificate.
    • Passport Card (Ireland).
    • UK Military card (known as MOD90). Only acceptable for current serving personnel.

  • All documents must be current as we cannot accept expired documentation.

    Utility bill (dated within the last 6 months)

    Or:

    Council tax demand letter / statement (dated within the last 12 months)

    Or:

    Please note, we cannot accept any of the below if you’re also using it for proof of identity.

    • UK photo driving licence.
    • UK full paper driving licence.
    • EU/EEA driving licence with photograph and signature; this must be issued by a member state of the EU/EEA.
    • Bank or Building Society Statement. This must be issued by a regulated financial sector firm in the UK, EU or equivalent jurisdiction and dated showing transactions within the last 6 months. Statements showing interest only, carry forward balances or ISA statements CANNOT be accepted.
    • Mortgage statement. This must be issued by a regulated financial sector firm in the UK, EU or equivalent jurisdiction and dated within the last 12 months.
    • HM Revenue and Customs Tax Notification issued within the last 12 months. This must be a HMRC Tax Notification i.e. statement of account, notice of coding relating to the current year. We CANNOT accept P45’s or P60’s.
    • UK Benefits / State Pension Notification letter dated within the last 12 months. This must be from an official source i.e. Job Centre Plus, Department for Work and Pensions / Local Authority confirming the rights to a benefit.
    • Solicitors’ correspondence confirming a house purchase in the last 3 months and dated within the last 3 months.
    • Local Council Rent/Card/ Statement – The Rent card / statement must be issued by the Local Council Authority and include your name and residential address. It must have also been updated in the last 3 months.

Getting in touch

If you have any questions or you’d like some help, you can call us on 0800 876 6847.

Our dedicated Bereavement team are available Monday to Friday, 8am - 5pm (closed weekends and English Bank Holidays).

If you need to call us from abroad, you can call us on +44 (0) 113 270 1154.

Useful contacts

Halifax Share Dealing Limited.  Registered in England and Wales no. 3195646. Registered Office: Trinity Road, Halifax, West Yorkshire, HX1 2RG. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, 12 Endeavour Square, London, E20 1JN under registration number 183332. A Member of the London Stock Exchange and an HM Revenue & Customs Approved ISA Manager.