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Frequently asked questions

Who are we?

Blanchards are a firm of Probate Researchers based in Kent. Our dedicated Genealogists trace thousands of heirs on a global scale. We work with various legal professionals, councils, banks and directly with beneficiaries to estates.

What are Probate Researchers? (Heir Hunters)

As Probate Researchers, we are asked by various legal professionals (Councils, Police, GLD) to trace relatives of deceased estates. Once located by our expert Genealogists, we begin the process of connecting the estate to the those entitled. Blanchards believe that our modern methods of research, coupled with the traditional techniques, make our ability to solve a case almost unparalleled.


Why have I been contacted?

We may have contacted you because we believe you are to be a beneficiary to an Unclaimed Estate, or a lost beneficiary to a Will. We hope that the news of a potential inheritance will be welcomed but we understand that you may be a little cautious to begin with, please look around our website to confirm our legitimacy.



Contacted by another company?

It is not uncommon for a number of companies to contact the same beneficiaries. Blanchards and firms like us work from the Bona Vacantia list, which is updated every day by the Government Legal Department. It contains names of people who have passed away. It is our job to trace their heirs, and as every company is notified at the same time can lead to competition within the industry. As we tell every one of our clients, it is important to proceed with the right firm for you, so be sure to ask plenty of questions and take notes!



How long will it take?

Unfortunately, each case has individual requirements and that changes on a case by case basis, making it impossible to give a definitive answer. Once your case has started, we will give you regular updates, having contact with our client care officer.



Who do we work with?

We work very closely with our sister company Athena. Athena specialise in estate administration, lost documents and assets and estate distribution.

Blanchard’s work closely with UK leading property agents, Savills. Savills is one of the worlds leading property agents. With 700 offices across the globe, Blanchards working relationship with Savills ensures all of our property related probate cases are handled by the best.
Blanchard’s are backed by the CoreProp group. The CoreProp Group – regulated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), provide clients with professional services within all property related industries. From valuations to portfolio management, CoreProp do it all.

Rules of Intestacy Explained

The rules of intestacy determine how the estate of someone is distributed when they pass without a will. These rules are absolute and allocate your estate to your family members in a strict order. It is determined purely from bloodline connections to the deceased. Usually the spouse or civil partner will inherit the estate, although unmarried or divorced partners will not. If there is no spouse or civil partner, the estate moves down to any surviving children, grandchildren or great grandchildren.
If there are no surviving children, grandchildren or great grandchildren, the estate moves up the line to parents. If both parents have passed away, we will look to see if the intestate had any surviving siblings and/or nieces and nephews. Again, if the deceased has no surviving siblings and/or nieces and nephews, the estate moves up again to surviving grandparents. If there are no surviving grandparents, the estate will go to any surviving Aunt, Uncles, or cousins.


Payments Explained

Please see our Fees page.