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Fidelity's bereavement process

What to do when you lose a loved one

A guide for executors and administrators

Making difficult times a little easier

Losing someone close to you can be very difficult. And if you’re the person responsible for sorting out the estate and carrying out the wishes of the person who has died, it can also be confusing and stressful. 

We hope this page will make the process of interacting with Fidelity that bit smoother. You can also download this information as a PDF.

If you'd like to start the process online now, please let us know by notifying us of the bereavement.

Notify us of the bereavement
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What to do when an investor dies

Working out what to do when a relative or someone close to you dies can be overwhelming. However, when it comes to dealing with investments or pensions held with Fidelity, there are just three things you need to think about:

1. Let us know

Notify us online, write or call. Then send us a death certificate.

2. Obtain probate

Show us you’re authorised to deal with the estate.

3. Distribute the assets

Tell us what to do with the investments.

If you need any further guidance or support, please call our dedicated bereavement team on 0800 41 41 16 - we’re open Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 5:30pm, and on Saturdays from 9am to 12:30pm.

1. How to let us know

Notify us and send a death certificate

You can notify us online, write, or call to tell us an investor has died. Where possible, it’s worth notifying us online first, and as soon as you can. That way we can start the process while we wait for your accompanying documents.

You'll also need to send us an original or certified copy of the death certificate. And, if it's available, the grant of representation (known as Certificate of Confirmation in Scotland). Please send all your documents to Fidelity International, PO Box 391, Tadworth, KT20 9FU. We always return the original copy of the death certificate as soon as possible.

Notify us of the bereavement

To call us: 0800 41 41 16.

To write to us: Fidelity International, PO Box 391, Tadworth, KT20 9FU.

 

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What we’ll do next

  • Put a hold on the account, stop any dealing and reinvest any income generated by the investments
  • Stop any regular savings or withdrawal plans. Please keep in mind that contributions made after the date of death will be returned as they cannot be accepted. This can happen if an investor dies before their contribution is processed.
  • Register you as the primary point of contact for the estate so that you receive all communications and can notify other parties accordingly
  • Remove the investor’s name from any joint accounts they held
  • Produce a valuation of the investor’s account on the day they died – you may need this for Inheritance Tax purposes or when applying for a grant of representation

What you need to do next

  • Contact us again when you have the grant of representation or a completed Small Estates Form.

FAQs about how to let us know

How quickly should I notify you?
What is a grant of representation?
Can I send copies of documents?
What happens to fees?
Are the arrangements for SIPPs different?
What about Junior ISAs?

2. How to obtain probate

Show us you’re authorised to deal with the estate

You’ll need to send us a sealed copy of the grant of representation signed by each of the executors. Because of the legal language used, this is the part many people find daunting. However, it’s very important – without it, we cannot distribute any assets in line with the instructions in the Will.

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How to apply for probate

You can do this yourself (or ask a solicitor) by applying to your local probate registry or sheriff court. It usually takes around two months to obtain a grant of representation but complex cases can take a year or more. 
Applying for probate can be complicated. Guidance and support is available at gov.uk/applying-for-probate

Small estates

We can release money from the estate if you’re not applying for probate, if:

  • the total value of the estate is less than the nil-band rate for Inheritance Tax,
  • the total value of Fidelity investments in the estate is less than £50,000, and
  • the person who died left a Will.

You will need to send us:

  • a Small Estates form - which must be signed and witnessed,
  • a completed form to sell or transfer the investments (see Distributing the assets lower down on this page), and
  • the original or certified copy of the Will.

If you're ready to start the bereavement process now, you can notify us online.

FAQs about probate

Do I need a grant of representation for a Junior product?
What about joint accounts?
Can I withdraw funds to pay Inheritance Tax or funeral expenses?
What happens to the investments while we’re waiting for probate?
How do I switch the investments to cash?
What if the deceased was living abroad?

3. How to distribute the assets

Tell us what to do with the investments

This is the point when beneficiaries decide whether they’d like us to invest the money into a new account, transfer the investments into a new name, or sell them and send them the cash. There are forms to complete, potentially tax to pay, and different rules depending on the type of account.

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What you need to do

Read the options below to decide what you want to do with the investments. Once you have downloaded the relevant forms, complete them and send them to us along with the grant of representation or Small Estates Form. To enable us to complete our identity verification checks, please ensure the Executor’s date of birth is provided where requested. We may need to contact you if you don’t provide the Executor’s date of birth where requested which may cause delays to your application.

If you want us to transfer the investments into new names:

If you want us to sell the investments:

If beneficiaries want to use the money to invest in an ISA:
 

What we’ll do next

  • Complete our identity verification checks
  • Carry out your instructions, and keep you informed by letter
  • Send you confirmation of each sale or transfer, plus a closing statement
  • If you’ve asked us to sell the investments, we’ll pay the money to you, so you can pass it on to the beneficiary

FAQs about distributing assets

What is an additional ISA allowance?
How can a spouse or civil partner transfer an additional ISA allowance from another provider?
Will the estate have to pay tax?
Are there any charges?
What happens to deals in progress or income received during a transfer (or after an account is closed)?
Can investments be transferred into a trust?

Extra help and support

More Fidelity help and support

Don't see an answer to your question here? We have many more helpful FAQs to help you understand the bereavement process.

See our other bereavement FAQs

Other helpful links

Citizens Advice Bureau – adviceguide.org.uk
The Money Advice Service - moneyadviceservice.org.uk
Bereavement Advice Centre – bereavementadvice.org
Government sites – gov.uk or Scotland.gov.uk
Cruse Bereavement Care – cruse.org.uk


Contacting Fidelity

Call our dedicated bereavement team on 0800 41 41 16 - we’re open Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 5:30pm, and on Saturdays from 9am to 12:30pm.

Fidelity International
PO Box 391
Tadworth
KT20 9FU