No certificate? No problem… Lord Lucan’s family doesn’t need one
25 November 2014 by James Bird
“In November 1974 Lord Lucan disappeared following the murder of his family’s nanny. For many years people speculated on whether he was alive or dead. It was only twenty five years later – in August 1999 – that his family were able to obtain a grant of probate allowing them to deal with his estate. Even then no death certificate for Lord Lucan has ever been produced. This was obviously a very difficult situation for that family – as it would have been for all those other families where a person was missing presumed dead.
On the 1st October, following the passing into law of the Presumption of Death Act 2013, families are now able to apply for a Presumption of Death Certificate for a loved one who has gone missing and is presumed dead. This will enable complex legal and financial issues to be resolved straightaway. They will be able to close bank accounts, stop direct debits and apply for probate if necessary.
It will also mean that any marriage or civil partnership will come to an end in the same way as if the missing person had died. Also, property can now be inherited under the missing person’s Will.
This is a major advance for those families coming to terms with losing someone close to them in this way.