Category Archives: General

Bona Vacantia – Unclaimed Estates in England

Bona Vacantia

Many people die intestate and leave assets that can be worth a lot of money. But if no relatives can be found then these assets can go to the Crown. A list of estates that remain unclaimed is held and is called the Bona Vacantia list.

Whenever someone dies in England, if they do not leave a will advising who they wish to leave their assets to, and if no-one comes forward to claim that inheritance within 12 years of their death, their entire estate goes to the Treasury – i.e. the UK Government gets it all.

Because the government say that they would rather have the money go to the rightful heirs than themselves, the government have set up a list which can be accessed by anyone online, which shows all of the names of the estates that they have registered where no-one can be found to claim the inheritance. That list is called the Bona Vacantia list which means ‘vacant goods’. Anyone can search through this list to see if any of their deceased relatives are on the list and liable to leave an estate that could be valuable.

Only certain people are allowed to claim against an estate and that is close relatives, further details are given below.

Who Can Claim a Bona Vacantia Estate?

Only certain relatives are able to claim against a Bona Vacantia Estate. The simple explanation is that the person must be a blood relative of the deceased and be one of the following:

  • Parent
  • Grandparents
  • Parents
  • Aunt (by blood not marriage)
  • Uncle (by blood not marriage)
  • Sister (including half-sister)
  • Brother (including half-brother)
  • Children
  • Cousins (only first cousins, i.e. the children of the deceased’s uncle or aunt)

Obviously it can get a bit more complex than this but this is the essential list of beneficiaries. If any of the beneficiaries have themselves died and left children then they will then become entitled to that share.

A diagram of the main relatives that can claim on a Bona Vacantia estate.
A diagram of the main relatives that can claim on a Bona Vacantia estate.

In order to claim an entitlement the beneficiaries must have evidence that they are who they say they are and that they are related to the deceased in the way they claim. This can be done by getting appropriate copies of birth, marriage and death certificates from the appropriate Registry Office.

Which Names Are Listed on Bona Vacantia?

You can find a full list of names of those who have died intestate (without a will) and for whom no relatives can be found, on the website in either the form of a list or by searching for a particular name or area where someone may have died. Obviously if the deceased has quite a common surname then it is going to be difficult to find relatives – for example, there are over 100 names on the list with the surname Jones so those are going to be more difficult to solve.

However, there are names on the list that are more distinctive and rare like the following:

Ignat Bladezki
James Anthony Blenkey
Frank Arthur Booton
Gertrude Maud Chitty
George William Flippance
Alan John Hankinson
Edward Lish
Edward Onions
Ellen Deborah Parker-Husband
Jean Albert Recordon
May Kathleen Sackett

These are just a small selection of names from the list, there are many more unusual and common surnames of people who were residents of England when they died. To find out the full list of names or to search through them you can check here.

The Importance of Having a Will

If you do not have a will and you die then there are strict criteria set out by law, as to who will get the value of your estate on your death. Obviously then, if those people are not the beneficiaries that you would actually want to receive all your worldly goods then you need to make sure that you have a will specifying your wishes.

A lot of people do not think about making a will until they feel like they are ‘getting old’! It is put off from year to year because we either do not want to think about it or just think it will not happen to us at any time soon.

However, it can be quite simple to make a will (as long as your affairs are not too complex). Although it is best to get a will drawn up by a solicitor, you can also get a kind of ‘readymade’ will where you just need to fill in the details. Once you have specified your wishes in this document and completed it according to the instructions, it is valid in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

With a will costing less than £20 there is really no need to put off completing one, even if this is a more simple version for the interim until you get a solicitor to draw up a more complex will. You can get legal forms to complete a will online – see the link on the left for one particular example.

Where Can you Get RAL Tester Pots?

With many more items being offered in colours in the RAL colour range, it can be useful to know where to get RAL tester pots so that you can check the colour before ordering.

RAL colours come in 210 shades for the matt colours and 183 in a gloss finish. They have been around since 1927.

You can actually buy RAL spray paint colours online for around £10 plus postage and you can get some more common colours in spray paint form from Amazon (see example to the left).

For example, many doors and windows come in anthracite grey which is RAL 7016, so if you need a touch up for that you can certainly get hold of something like that on the left.

In another example, a well known kitchen company offers kitchen that can be painted in any colour in the RAL spectrum. But obviously if you want to check out the colour that you are thinking of buying, then you might want to know where you can get RAL tester pots.

One place that you can go to in the UK is to Homebase where they have a Dulux mixing desk. here they can pretty much mix to any colour that you want including colours in the RAL spectrum.

So it is worth buying a couple of tester pots for £3.29 to decide on what colour you want the whole kitchen to be painted before going ahead with a big purchase like that.

Obviously when you get paint from different sources there may be slight differences in the actual result of the colour achieved so complete matching may be tricky.

In fact if you look online at pictures of specific RAL colours (for example google RAL 1013) you will get a massive variety of shades for one actual colour which will make it difficult to decide what it actually looks like!

What Are the Chances of Winning the Lottery?

What are the chances of winning the lottery with 59 balls?

In October 2015 the national lottery in the UK increased the number of balls in the draw from 49 to 59, thus making it much harder to actually win the jackpot.

Previously, choosing 6 numbers from 49 would give you a 1 in 14 million chance of winning the lottery but now with the extra 10 numbers to pick your 6 numbers from, the chances have massively decreased to 1 in 45 million.

This increase in the number of balls and decrease in the chance of winning have been proven with the fact that the jackpot has continued to be an elusive prize that has not been won since the changes were made, contributing to a massive jackpot of £50 million + which could go on for a couple of weeks.

Tonight’s draw (6th January 2016) will be the 14th rollover jackpot – continuous rollovers since the new rules were introduced. This could trigger more people to buy tickets just because of the size of the jackpot which could then mean that more of the number combinations are covered.

The national lottery website says the following about the limit on the size of any rollover jackpot:

The jackpot can only stand at £50 million for two draws. If no one wins in the second draw, the full amount rolls down and is shared between the players in the next winning prize tier.

So it might be worth waiting to see if anyone wins the jackpot this time and if they don’t then there might be a great chance of winning more money with lower odds in the draw where the jackpot will be filtered down if no-one wins. This would be next Saturday 9th January 2016.

If no-one wins the jackpot on Saturday then the chances of winning with 5 numbers and the bonus ball are around 1 in 7.5 million which is almost twice the odds as winning the jackpot before the numbers were expanded to 59!

So if you want to know what are the chances of winning the lottery with 59 balls then I would say much better if you wait until the jackpot has to filter down!

Finding a Wholesaler

If you are thinking of selling products on eBay then one way to make some money is to get your products from a wholesaler. Or perhaps you know what you want to sell but you don’t know where to get those products from. If this is the case then there is a great way to get access to a whole lot of wholesalers. Obviously buying at wholesale prices gives you much more scope to make a profit on eBay and also selling in bulk will get you a larger turnover and hence income.

There is a website where you can get instant and unlimited access to 8,000 pre-screened legitimate wholesalers. There are suppliers of every shape and size, including a large portion who are happy to ship overseas and many with no or very low minimum order requirements.
Salehoo is one of the largest communities of online traders with over 75,000 members with community forums and smart seller training.

To learn more about this online community and gain access to these wholesalers check out the SaleHoo website.

Converting Fahrenheit to Celsius

It seems that people either think in Fahrenheit or Celsius and are often unable to really ‘feel’ what a temperature is unless they have it in the units that they are used to. That is often the case with weather temperatures anyway.

But not only do we have different measurements for weather in Celsius and Fahrenheit but also when cooking, some ovens use one and some use another temperature. Often it differs from country to country but in some places you can buy ovens that read either celsius or Fahrenheit.

Anyway, to convert from one to the other manually you do the following:

Celsius to Fahrenheit
multiply by 8 and divide by 5 then add 32

Fahrenheit to Celsius
Take off 32 then multiply by 5 and divide by 8

These are not totally accurate figures but this is the easiest way to remember it if you need to get an approximate number and you don’t have google to hand! The easiest way is to just type in Google the conversion that you want like ’28 celsius to fahrenheit’ and it will tell you the answer.