Treasury Solicitor's Department

Attorney General written question – answered on 29th June 2020.

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Photo of Zarah Sultana Zarah Sultana Labour, Coventry South

To ask the Attorney General, what plans he has in place to ensure that the Treasury Solicitor - Bona Vacantia Division (a) undertakes investigations into the existence of wills for the deceased in an efficient and diligent manner and (b) administers estates in accordance with the law.

Photo of Michael Ellis Michael Ellis The Solicitor-General

The Bona Vacantia Division (BVD) of the Government Legal Department (GLD) deals with the estates of people domiciled in England & Wales who appear to have died without leaving a valid will or relatives entitled to share in their estates in priority to the Crown.

Estates are administered by BVD in compliance with the law and the legal duties which apply to the administrators of estates.

This includes making reasonable enquiries to establish whether the deceased has left a valid will or relatives entitled to share in the estate in priority to the Crown. Such enquiries include publishing details of the estate on BVD’s website and in the national and local press; making enquiries of banks, local solicitors and other parties and potentially conducting a search of the deceased’s property to establish whether they left a will.

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