It’s the stuff fairy tales are made of – a forgotten Will coming to land and landing an unsuspecting heir with a fortune.
But if your name is on the list below you could be the beneficiary of an unclaimed estate you never even knew about.
In Leicestershire and Leicester there are currently 120 such estates where someone has passed away with making a will or with no next of kin.
According to Finders International- a specialist probate genealogist team- family members and heirs have just 12 years to claim an estate once it has been reported unclaimed to the Crown.
Danny Curran, star of BBC Heir Hunters and MD of Finders International told our sister paper the Birmingham Mail: “These estates are waiting to be claimed from the government, who are sitting on the fortunes of over ten thousand people across the UK.”
Any individual can check the Central Probate Registry to see if any next of kin are on the unclaimed list.
The list has seen a sharp increase in numbers over the past few years after government cuts mean that there is no search for a Will before an unclaimed estate is added to the list.
Danny Curran explained that this inexpensive search will save a lot of wasted time when searching for next of kin
He added: “Valid wills do exist for approximately one in every five cases currently being advertised by the Government as intestacies.
“Many relatives are being needlessly traced only to find their expectations are dashed.
“The solution to this escalating problem is simple: The Bona Vacantia division should revert to an inexpensive Will search prior to advertising estates.
“Where valid Wills are found, the estate does not need to be advertised.
“This would also ensure the deceased’s wishes are met.”
These are the surnames of unclaimed Leicestershire estates.
You can find more information at https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/unclaimed-estates-list
This article has been first published in hinckleytimes.net