How the Unclaimed Estate List works
The list of the estates is updated every day by the Treasury Solicitor. Newly advertised estates will appear at the top of the list. After one day of publication, the new estates will be sorted among the other entries based on alphabetical order.
If there are estates where the Bona Vacantia no longer has an interest, which can occur when a claim to an estate has been accepted , then the estate name is removed from the list. Furthermore, there is a 30-year fixed time limit on estates from when the date of death took place. Once this expires, the estates are also removed.
You can download the document and use the search function of the program to pick specific locations and surnames, date of death timeframes or death location. At the time of writing (June 2023) there are more than 6000 unclaimed estates on the list.
The spreadsheet can be used to search by name, date of birth, or place of birth and death. If the deceased person had an alias, and the alias is public knowledge, it may also be listed.
It’s worth knowing that even though the value of the estate is known to the government, this information is not shown on the Unclaimed Estates List. This is a precautionary measure designed to prevent any fraudulent or speculative claims from taking place.
Making an Unclaimed Estate Claim
The Unclaimed Estates list is a valuable piece of information which can be used to help identify whether or not you have a relative that you can claim from which you didn’t know about. However, the claim process for this task is quite complex, and establishing your rights can be difficult. Therefore, it is highly recommended that you seek legal advice to make your claim. If you think you may be the rightful heir to an estate on the unclaimed estate list, contact a probate genealogist or probate solicitor for advice on how to establish this and assistance in making a successful claim.
Gov.uk Unclaimed Estates List
Looking for a Probate Genealogist
If you are looking for a probate genealogist to assist you with a proving entitlement to an unclaimed estate, The Probate Network can recommend a highly trusted provider with a fantastic success rate. For an introduction, please complete the form below.