Wills after 1858 are available in an index. The National Archives are bringing wills prior to 1858 on-line.

Wills can be proven many years after they were written or the person died. These can be long searches.

After 1858:
Name, address (city) and approximate date of death are required to make an initial search. The entries are arranged by year and then alphabetically by surname then first name. These are usually available on film at local record offices. Once you have located the details on the index, you can obtain a copy of the will for 5.00
Her Majesty's Courts Service gives a load of information on wills including a form to download and send in with payment to obtain a copy of the will (if there is one) as mentioned above it costs 5.

This will is from 1990 so no beneficiary names are listed to protect privacy.

Before 1858:
Keep checking The National Archives as these are coming on-line. There is a cost of 3 to download a will once you have found it.

PCC (Prerogative Court of Canterbury) wills are available online (pay to download) covering the period from 1384 to 1858.

Prior to 1882 wills were not made by married women. They had no possessions or assets of their own, in legal terms. Everything they had belonged to their husbands. Widows did leave wills, though, if sufficiently wealthy.

Where to apply:
Probate Department, First Avenue House, 42-49 High Holborn, London WC1V 6NP

Useful Probate Addresses:
Principal Probate Registry, First Avenue House, 42-49 High Holborn, London WC1V 6NP Email them initially, but a personal visit is required.

Borthwick Institute of Historical Research, St Anthony's Hall, Peasholme Green, York YO1 2PW

Cheshire Record Office, Duke Street, Chester CH1 2HJ

Lancashire Record Office, Bow Lane, Preston, PR1 8ND

Manchester Probate Registry, Astley House, Quay Street, Manchester, M3 4AT
Tel: 0161 834 4319

The National Archives, Rushkin Avenue, Kew

York Probate Registry, Castle Chambers, York YO1 9RG
Tel: 01904 666 777
Email them.

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This document last modified Sunday, 08-Feb-2015 22:59:57 GMT

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