There are a lot of legal aspects to consider when a loved one passes away – but what exactly happens to assets and property when the deceased fails to leave a will behind, or to publicly name the next of kin who has the right to receive everything? Well, it can mean that a remote Scottish castle is ready to be claimed by an unsuspecting descendent, as well as that descendent potentially having the legal right to a host of other assets, too.
The Government has recently published a long list of unclaimed assets based in Scotland, which not only include significant property, but monetary assets to the value of £370,000 for what the property is worth, too. This means that any individual with the right surname may have the opportunity to make a claim on this valuable opportunity.
What You Need to Know About the Estates
There are a total of 425 empty Scottish estates simply waiting to be claimed. The Government has published a list of these empty estates which have been left unclaimed due to the fact that their previous owners died without making a will, or while failing to identify the next of kin eligible for the estate.
Under the legal system in Scotland, if an individual dies without leaving behind a clear will dictating how they want their property and assets to be shared between designated benefactors, then any unclaimed assets refers to the care of the Crown. It is the duty of The Office of Queen’s and Lord Treasurer’s Remembrancer to then care for these assets.
Claiming Unwanted Estates
The good news is that the Succession Act of March 2016 has actually made the process of claiming unwanted estates significantly easier, due to the Scottish Parliament eliminating the necessity to gain the form of insurance known as a Bond of Caution.
Claiming these unwanted estates begins with taking the time to find out whether you have the same surname as the deceased and previous owner of the estate.
Checking Your Surname
While certain surnames are distinctly common, it is always worth checking. The revealed list includes some straightforward surnames, as well as more obscure ones, such as Carlin, Hunniball, Malone-Philbane and Raube.
The full list can be found here.
If able to successfully prove that you are entitled to a claim, a variety of assets will be available, including land, money, mansions and castles. Due to the fact that the deceased failed to leave a will, this offers the opportunity for all of their belongings, possessions and assets to be claimed. Along with these empty Scottish estates, it is also believed that there are more than 8000 unclaimed estates in England and Wales, too.
If you think that you’re owed property or assets from a family member – however distant – who failed to leave behind a will, or require any other legal advice, then don’t hesitate to contact our professional team at The Inheritance Experts today.