ITC Probate/Chorus Law/The Bereavemnt Advice Centre - All Rogues Together

Please read this as a heartfelt warning...

Some years ago there was a thread on MSE regarding the terrible work performed by ITC Legal Services of Stratford Upon Avon -

Before the thread was closed, ITC themselves posted an apology to past customers for the poor levels of service that they had provided to them and stated that they have introduced changes in their operation to ensure that new customers will receive a far better level of service. That was in October 2012.

However, since that change, ITC Legal Services have started to use different names and different methods to attract customers but their service still remains poor, with their own satisfaction rate of 86% and many, many very unhappy customers.

The names that ITC Legal Services also now use include:
ITC Probate, Chorus Law, Simplify, Barclay's Bank Deceased Accounts Department, Halifax/HBOS Deceased Accounts Service and they are also financially and managerially linked with the Bereavement Advice Centre.

The methods that they use to catch their customers include suggesting the use of their own companies in leaflets issued by local registrars on the registration of a death, and falsely announcing themselves as Barclay's Bank or HBOS Deceased Accounts Departmentwhen a customer calls the 0800 number issued by the banks in the event of an account holder's death.

The links below give a further insight into ITC's past and current practices:

The probate industry is completely unregulated in the UK and ITC make full use of that fact. My message to anyone who is thinking of using ITC or any of it's other companies is - DON'T. You will regret it. Find a local solicitor (who WILL be regulated) and save yourself years of pain and heartache.

I'm sure that as people find this thread there will be numerous stories of their current disgraceful activities within this unregulated probate industry...
Note to Self: When posting, remember to keep within "forum rules" to avoid upsetting other "interested parties"


  • angrygirlie
    angrygirlie Forumite Posts: 123 Forumite
    I too had the unfortunate experience with itc. They were instructed to administer my mums estate after l contacted the Bereavement Advice Centre in Jan 2008. All was finalised in Nov 2009 and during that period of time , itc made the Probate process an absolute nightmare. I wrote a series of long and detailed letters of complaints about the most unacceptable service and treatment l had received. I too was told via letter, by the customer relations manager at the time, that...l quote...
    ' We regret that we cannot change any of the experiences that you endured throughout this period but can assure you that as a relatively new company we are always reviewing procedures to see where improvements can be made. More stringent productivity and quality checks have been implemented to ensure that we develop and support all administrators to minimise any errors'
    And they also write 'We acknowledge that you have suffered a great deal of stress during the administration of the estate and thankyou for your feedback with regards to how your complaint was handled. The customer relations manager has changed since your complaint was raised and the feedback that you have provided will be used to ensure that the Customer Relations Department corresponds with all of our customers in an appropriate manner.'
    ' Regrettably, it is evident that the level of service offered by us has fallen below the standard our customers should expect to receive. We would like to assure you that the issues you have brought to our attention have been raised at Senior Executive level and steps have been taken to improve the service. We would like to thank you for raising your concerns and frustrations with us and hope to reassure you that your feedback will help us in the future so that others do not have a similar experience'
    They finish by writing ' and that you are able to move on from this period that has affected you so greatly. We offer our sincere apologies that we did not ease the burden.'
    The letter is dated 21st January 2010.
    Itc are still failing customers and giving shoddy and unacceptable service. Nothing has changed except the names they trade under. Please be aware of the names on this thread forum as clients are still being driven to despair.
    I would also like to point out that itc claim to have over 20 years experience yet this letter written in 2010 states that ITC are a ' relatively new company'
    Misleading or what?
  • outlander
    outlander Forumite Posts: 1 Newbie
    ITC Legal Services put myself through so much despair.I don't know where to begin so shall simply state they have been the very worst experience of my life.
  • dparker786
    dparker786 Forumite Posts: 1 Newbie
    I've been a visitor of MSE for many years. This is the first time I've ever felt the need to post, and it's to advise people to avoid this company like the plague.

    When you are in the horrible situation where you have to phone up certain banks to inform them of your love one's passing, I implore you to try and keep a level head and not be taken in by the 'free home consultation' with ITC that they offer. They are able to set this free consultation up extremely quickly (2 days after I phoned) and this feels as though you're getting important things sorted with the help of a company introduced through a huge high street bank, but this (in my case, and a lot of other cases I've read about) clouds you're judgement and it's too late before you realise...

    Moral of the story I think is always do your research, remember that you do have some time after someone dies, you don't have to sort all the estate details immediately, and choose the a recommended probate company (or read how to do it yourself).

  • lifesabeach11
    lifesabeach11 Forumite Posts: 1 Newbie
    They made our lives hell for 13 months PLEASE AVOID THIS COMPANY AT ALL COST.
  • portlandboy
    portlandboy Forumite Posts: 297
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    edited 19 July 2013 at 8:54AM
    After overvaluing my father's estate by some £50,000 in 2008, ITC Legal Services finally admitted their mistake on the 8th July has only taken them 5 YEARS to rectify it and pay me the money that is rightfully mine.
    No interest or compensation though.
    Note to Self: When posting, remember to keep within "forum rules" to avoid upsetting other "interested parties"
  • Recently_bereaved
    Recently_bereaved Forumite Posts: 1 Newbie
    I just wanted to say thank you very much to all of you who have taken the time to post on this thread, and my sympathies to all of you who have suffered at the hands of ITC, now known as Chorus Law. It is thanks to all of you bothering to tell your experiences online that I know the truth about them and decided not to employ them to sort out probate on my mum's estate.

    My introduction started in much the same way as many others. My mother died in June and as her current acct was with Barclays I went in to register the death and close her account. They told me that they could arrange a home visit from a probate expert who could tell me about how probate works and what I need to do, and a visit was set up for very soon afterwards.

    The woman who came was from an outfit called Simplify, and when probed she said "think of us as the Citizens' Advice Bureau of probate", and made out that Simplify was a totally independent service paid for by various banks to give the best possible advice to the relatives of deceased customers. She went on to detail the various steps in the process of applying for probate and winding up an estate - making out that it was immensely complicated, then went on to rubbish the service offered by solicitors, before delivering the sales pitch: by far the best option is to go with a probate specialist, and out of all of them Chorus Law (who I know from reading these threads is the new name for ITC) was streets ahead, the best in the field, etc.

    Like many other posters, I was immensely relieved and reassured to think there was such a thing as a probate specialist, and that among them this one came so highly recommended. She said I needed to hand over various documents to her to be able to instruct Chorus Law, and we made an appointment for a few days later so I could hand it over.

    I then went online to check out Chorus Law, and boy am I glad I did! I had a narrow escape. I phoned to cancel the appointment with Simplify woman, and have now gone with a local solicitor instead to sort out the probate.

  • angrygirlie
    angrygirlie Forumite Posts: 123 Forumite
    Thank you for posting your experience on this particular misleading way ITC Legal services practice to net their clients and letting this forum know how they are doing it behind the name of Simplify. I am so glad to know that this thread has been sucessful in preventing so much more heartache and stress.
  • hollydays
    hollydays Forumite Posts: 19,812
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper
    I would distrust any company cashing in on grief by calling themselves an advice centre. How low can you get.
  • MrNotHappy
    MrNotHappy Forumite Posts: 1 Newbie
    As the rest of the forum states, stay away from Chorus Law (formally ITC) at all costs. I have a probate case running with them at the moment and they have made it incredibility difficult at every turn.
    The constant chasing for updates, the lack of accountability they take when you are paying them a large fee for their terrible service you are receiving is a joke.
    I have complained on a number of occasions to my Case Manager who just does not care about the service I'm given or their Team Leader who has attempted to fob me off with a pathetic excuse.
    When I have complained they seem to lose forms which were completed and submitted months ago. A worrying trend. So new forms have to be completed and sent in which buys them time to waste on not progressing your case.
    Remember that Chorus Law is NOT a law firm, do not be fooled by the name. They have to send forms off to their own solicitors to get them checked.
    I have been fed misinformation from the first meeting in order to get my business.
    It would have been cheaper and more straightforward to engage a local solicitor who have the power to act directly on your probate case.
    Do you be taken in by the sales pitch and stay away from these jokers.

  • angrygirlie
    angrygirlie Forumite Posts: 123 Forumite
    Thankyou MrNotHappy for posting your experience to warn others. Sadly, you are another victim of Chorus Law (same people who operate ITC Legal Services) regardless of vast amounts of complaints about the shameful practices of these 2 companies, they still practice with out a conscience for how they wreck peoples lives at such a delicate and fragile time, and have the audacity to self-claim that they are 'professionals ' at Probate!!
This discussion has been closed.
Meet your Ambassadors


  • All Categories
  • 340.1K Banking & Borrowing
  • 249.1K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 448.3K Spending & Discounts
  • 231.9K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 603.1K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 171.6K Life & Family
  • 245.1K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.8K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards