The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) has become an approved regulator of probate, and is the first non-legal body to be able to regulate probate services and licence Alternative Business Structures (ABS’s) under the terms of the Legal Services Act 2007.

Members will now be able to register to provide probate services, a reserved legal activity, and set up Alternative Business Structures (ABS’s) which bring together ICAEW Chartered Accountants with solicitors and other professionals.

ICAEW had originally entered into negotiations with the Legal Services Board (LSB) in February 2012 and received approval in December 2013. The Lord Chancellor moved to recommend the designations which required secondary legislation to be put before Parliament, which received approval of the House of Commons and came fully into law on 14 August 2014.

It is anticipated that ICAEW members will be able to apply for registration from late September. Members will need to be appropriately qualified and will need to attend a short ABS course and pass an assessment. More details of the requirements and application are available at