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Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 7602
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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How can one find out whether a deceased person has left a will

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How can one find out whether a deceased person has left a will or instructions?

Thanks for your patience.

If the person has left a Will then the person who is named as Executor in the Will is responsible for the Will and who the Will is revealed to. Usually the Executor will only reveal the Will to those who are entitled to benefit from it (ie. The beneficiaries who will inherit the estate).

If a grant of probate is required to deal with the estate (eg. If they had property or had assets of greater than approximately 10,000.00gbp) then a copy of the Will shall be attached to the grant of probate once the executor has obtained it.

You can order a copy of the grant of probate if/when it is granted and a copy of the Will shall be attached to this. Here is how you can search:-

If there is no need to apply for a grant of probate then the only way you can find out if the deceased held a Will is by contacting the executor.

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Kind regards,

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

If there is an executor how does one find out who he or she might be?


Our neighbour died last week. She had no family. We are wondering whether she had instructed a lawyer etc with regards XXXXX XXXXX funeral arrangements and the distribution of her property. How can one find out? How does one go about finding out?


They only way you can find it is via either 1) The executor (who would contact the beneficiaries anyway and deal with funeral arrangements/distribution of property) or 2) by getting a copy of the grant of probate which may or may not be required.

If the lady in question has passed away and made a Will then they would have informed the executor. The Executor would obviously check periodically (f they are not in contact) that she has not passed away). When they find out that she has then they will administer the estate in accordance with the Will.

There is no central registry of people that are the executors of Wills. If a private individual holds is named as executor then they will check themselves that the person is alive.

I know it seems strange and uncertain but these things have a way of working themselves out. Not many estates at all pass to the crown in the absences of a Will or living relatives that inherit under the intestacy rules.

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Kind regards,

Thomas and 3 other UK Law Specialists are ready to help you