Frequently Asked Questions

Below is a short list of the most frequently asked questions, however, if you cannot find the information you are looking for, please do not hesitate to contact us directly and we will be happy to do all we can to answer your enquiry.

Why has IGS contacted me?

The general public is often completely unaware of the type of work undertaken by IGS. If we have contacted you, our research has shown that you may be entitled to share in an estate matter. Should a person die without leaving a Will and without known next-of-kin, it is necessary to trace those entitled to share in that estate.

When we first contact you, we will provide you with background details relating to our work and we shall forward a legal agreement for your consideration. This is normal procedure and upon receipt of signed agreements from all relevant parties, we shall provide you with details relating to the relevant estate. These usually include the full name and date and place of death of the deceased, together with your relationship to them and and where possible the value of the estate. Until our research is finalized and all beneficiaries have been located and contacted, we may be unable to estimate the share of the estate due to you as the rules relating to the distribution of the estate vary from country to country and State to State.

How has IGS located me?

IGS uses the information provided in a wide range of records which are held in the public domain, together with our own databases. We also utilize a network of research agents who are experts in their respective areas of interest.

Why can IGS not disclose the name of the deceased?

We have expended a lot of research time and borne significant costs at our own risk in order to locate relevant next-of-kin. It is therefore our policy not to disclose the name of the deceased until we hold a legal contract from you which safeguards our position and which also protects your interest in this matter.

What costs are involved?

Our commission fee is deducted from the net amount due to you once any estate liabilities have been settled. These liabilities, if any, are deducted solely from the estate and are not your responsibility.

There are no hidden costs as our commission fee covers all of the expenses incurred in the proving of your claim.

Are there any associated risks?

By signing our agreement you will incur no risk of financial loss. We shall pursue this matter on your behalf and will only receive payment if and when you subsequently benefit from it. There is no risk to you and you will not be asked for any money other than our commission which we receive only when you receive your entitlement. It will not be necessary for you to incur any expenses in proving your claim as this will be undertaken by us on your behalf. We would not have approached you unless we were confident that we could establish your entitlement to share in the estate in question. If for any reason you do not receive any money, you will owe us nothing.

When will I receive payment?

The length of time needed for the administration of any estate, even those where the beneficiaries are known at the time of death, depends on a number of factors. In those cases where the beneficiaries are unknown it is difficult to estimate the additional time needed to bring such matters to a conclusion, however, we find that in most cases it takes approximately nine months to one year from our first contact with you until you receive payment.

What happens if I wish to proceed?

As soon as we receive your completed commission agreement and we have completed our research, we present a claim to the relevant solicitor or administrator. This takes the form of a family tree, together with supporting birth, marriage and death certificates. This allows a solicitor or administrator to calculate your share of the relevant estate. In due course, a cheque for your share of the estate, less our commission, will be forwarded directly to you by the administering solicitor. In the unlikely event of your claim being unsuccessful, all costs are borne by us and you will owe nothing to IGS.

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