Common Questions & Answers

We are here to guide you through every step of the process…

Probate genealogy is the research involved in identifying and locating the next of kin to a deceased person.

We are a firm probate genealogists who specialise in tracing beneficiaries especially to unclaimed estates where the deceased has left no Will.

It may be that you are a beneficiary to an unclaimed estate, or may know someone who is.

When a person dies without making a Will, their assets, belongings or estate become ‘intestate’, meaning there is no instruction as to what to do with them.

Usually the services of a firm of genealogists are not required, as the extent of the entitled next of kin is known. However, there are occasions where the next of kin is not known and it is vital that they are located.

It is common for families to lose touch over the years. In these circumstances it may be necessary for a firm of professional genealogists to get involved.

With no known next of kin, funds cannot be made available to locate any beneficiaries. Estate Research will attempt to locate heirs at our own expense/risk.

Sometimes our research finds no next of kin and the expenses we incur can never be recovered. If there are no next of kin or no attempt is made to trace any next of kin then the estate passes to the Crown.

We work on a commission basis. Our fee is calculated as a percentage of your net entitlement. It is deducted at source by the administrating solicitors and sent to us at the same time as the estate is distributed to the beneficiaries.

There are no hidden charges. If the located heirs receive nothing then Estate Research receives nothing.

Of course! When our final report is submitted to the solicitor we can provide you with a copy, free of charge.

When we make contact with you, it is usually as a result of a methodical research project into the family history of the deceased.

We use a wide range of public resources and historical records, online technology and our own in-house databases, which are regularly updated. We also utilise a worldwide network of trusted agents, when our research takes us overseas.

If you are indeed a beneficiary, we make sure you are happy with our terms of business and will ask you to sign a commission agreement.

Once all our research has been completed Estate Research will provide the administrating solicitors with a comprehensive report detailing your claim so you can secure your entitlement.

The report will contain details of the family history as well as a complete family tree, enabling the solicitor to calculate each beneficiary’s share of the estate. In due course the solicitors handling the administration will send you your cheque.

If you have been contacted by another firm of ‘heir hunters’ you may wish to take advice from us and we may be able to assist you on how to progress the matter. Please contact ps@estateresearch.co.uk to discuss this further.