Searching to prove the last Will is a matter of protection

Will Search Safeguard

Neil Bates, Solicitor at Caris Robson LLP in Prudhoe, Northumberland, commented: “We were in possession of a Will written in 2014. There was a suggestion that there may be a later Will that the testator had made and we wanted to ensure as far as possible that everything had been done to establish that this was the last Will.

“We suggested that a Will search should be conducted as a safeguard, which would help to locate any later Wills.”

A Certainty Will Search Combined was conducted, which checks to see if a Will had been registered with The National Will Register and searches in geographically targeted areas for Wills that had not been registered.

Neil continued: “The Certainty Will Search did not disclose any later Will. By incorporating a Certainty Will Search into our process in this instance, it assisted, in so far as was possible, in ensuring that we distributed the estate correctly and provided a reassurance that the Will we had before us was the last.”

Should a Will come to light after the estate has been distributed, Caris Robson LLP and their client are protected because they can demonstrate that a legally accredited Will search was undertaken to, as far as reasonably practicable, prove the last Will.

A Certainty Will Search is a very low-cost disbursement from the estate that provides a high level of protection underpinned by leading Queen’s Counsel Opinion.

During the search a Will written four years earlier was located at another law firm 10 miles away. This allowed the law firm to denote on their records that a previous client had died and the Will they held had in fact been revoked by the 2014 Will.