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Probate Research Overview

When an individual passes away, it is often necessary to open a probate estate for the purpose of transferring the title of assets to the decedent’s rightful heirs. While most people die in the company of close family, some have no close family members or have simply lost touch with their heirs. In these cases, the decedent’s estate may be opened by a distant relative, a friend, a claimant, or a local public administrator. Often, these people have only a limited knowledge of the decedent’s extended family and may lack the tools to conduct a thorough investigation. As a result, rightful heirs go unknown and estate funds end up escheating to a state or local government as unclaimed property. This is to the detriment of the rightful heirs at law.

Each year, thousands of estates and millions of dollars go unclaimed because the whereabouts of heirs or legatees are unknown. Probate research or heir searching is the process of identifying and locating people who are entitled to share in these estate matters and are unaware of their legal entitlements. Our job is to reunite lost fortunes with rightful owners.

probate researchLocating missing heirs and proving heirship to the court are painstaking and complex tasks requiring much time and perseverance. When a states attorney is involved in a complex probate estate with unknown heirs, it becomes necessary to document the complete heirship to the court beyond a reasonable doubt. Many attorneys and administrators lack the time and expertise to conduct research on difficult estate matters.

Thoroughly conducted research and carefully assembled fragments of information lead to the positive identification of heirs and the proper distribution of estate funds. Since 1956 this has been the specialty of Landex Research, Inc.

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