Information you need to make a Bona Vacantia claim
If you’ve discovered that you’re entitled to inherit assets listed on the unclaimed estates register (bona vacantia), you’ll need to prove your relationship with the deceased. Here’s the evidence you’ll need to provide before you can make a claim.
A family tree to show how you’re related.
All birth and marriage certificates that support the link.
Proof of your identity
Proof of your address
If you don’t have the certificates you’ll need to obtain them from the local registrar’s office where the event took place.
Making a thorough application
The items listed above are the minimum supporting documents required. The Treasurer makes it clear that ‘The onus is on the claimant to satisfy us that they are entitled.’ Therefore, it is advisable to provide full, detailed information about your relationship with the deceased. This could include:
A written account of how you discovered and proved the link.
More supporting documents such as census data, military records.
Any other information about deceased person that you have found out such as their occupation or last known address.
What happens next?
It will take about 4 weeks for your claim to be processed. During this time, you may be contacted with further requests for information.
The Treasury solicitor’s office will examine your claim and verify the supporting evidence carefully before they accept it. It’s important that your supporting documents are accurate. Many claimants submit family trees that are inaccurate as certain family members have been missed-out. Cases are subsequently rejected so you may want to get yours professionally verified first.
If you’re in any doubt, call IWC Ltd on 0800 612 6105 for free advice from a professional probate genealogist.