Our Fees

We offer a free written quotation for each request. Our main fee structures are as follows:

Hourly Rate

Research is undertaken on a time spent basis after agreeing a budget limit with our client. We report to you on conclusion of the research, or exhaustion of the budget. You will only be charged for the time spent on research should we be able to successfully resolve the matter within the agreed budget. Our fees include general expenses but are exclusive of disbursements (certificates etc) and VAT. Please contact us if you would like to know our current hourly rate for research.


Fixed Fee

Where a programme of research is well defined, we may be able to offer to work on a fixed fee basis. We would guarantee to undertake all necessary research within this figure and report back to you upon completion of our research.

This fee structure may be appropriate on modest estates or where there are limited funds.


Contingency Fee

Abel Associates conduct all the necessary research and locate all potential beneficiaries at our own risk and expense and recover our costs by agreeing a commission fee with each beneficiary located. Our fee is payable prior to distribution of the estate by direct deduction from the heirs entitlement. We receive no payment from the estate, or our client, should our searches prove unsuccessful.

A contingency fee is most appropriate on a full intestacy where there is no known next of kin, or you believe the case to be bona vacantia, and our clients do not have any authority to incur costs on behalf of the estate.

Whichever costing option you choose, we will provide a fully documented and straightforward report detailing our findings upon completion of research, or at agreed intervals. This will be supplemented with a diagrammatic family tree and distribution schedule where appropriate.