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17th May 2024

Irish people with these last names could be heir to some unclaimed fortune



There are hundreds of unclaimed estates in the UK under Irish names

A database of unclaimed estates,, tracks Irish people who have passed away without leaving a will. 

It contains over 300 names among which could be a deceased Irish relative whose estate remains unclaimed.

Who Owns These Estates?

The people listed are Irish-born men and women who have died in England and Wales since 1997. 

In these cases, authorities were unable to identify their next of kin, leaving the deceased’s estate – comprising money and property – unclaimed and un-transferred.

Order of Inheritance

When a person dies without a valid will, their estate is distributed according to a specific hierarchy:

  • Spouse or civil partner
  • Children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, etc.
  • Parents
  • Full siblings or their descendants (nieces and nephews)
  • Half siblings or their descendants (half nieces and nephews)
  • Grandparents
  • Uncles and aunts or their descendants (first cousins)
  • Half uncles and aunts or their descendants (half first cousins)

The Bona Vacantia Division administers these unclaimed estates in England and Wales. 

Members of the Irish public can submit a claim if they believe a relative is on the list. 

However, claims must be made within certain time limits: within 12 years of the estate’s administration completion, and no more than 30 years after the death of the deceased.

Claiming an Estate

Claims can be made for up to 30 years post-death, but no interest is paid on the money. 

Each estate managed by the Bona Vacantia Division is valued at over £500. 

If you believe your Irish family member is on the list and you could inherit one of these unclaimed estates, visit to submit a claim and potentially uncover a hidden inheritance.

The list of more than 300 names is here – the names are listed in the order of: Surname, Forename, date of birth, place of birth, date of death and place of death.