Home > Ask Our Experts > How to Trace Whereabouts of Trust Funds?

How to Trace Whereabouts of Trust Funds?

By: J.A.J Aaronson - Updated: 26 Mar 2024 | comments*Discuss
Trusts Locating Document Trust Will


A close friend died recently but shortly before he died he told me that he had set up a trust fund in the names of his children. The fund consisted of some inherited assets. We cant find any detail of the fund amongst his things. Is there a central registration body or some other way to trace what arrangements he had made?

(Mr Ed Cook, 8 July 2009)


Amongst the most difficult challenges facing those who must deal with the death of a relative or friend is that of locating documents and assets. Unless the deceased individual has left clear instructions regarding how to find these things, it is not uncommon for some arrangements to go unfound for good.

Sadly there is no central database or similar tool for the registration of trusts. There are several reasons for this; in the first instance, it is not necessary to ‘register’ a trust in order for it to be set up. Indeed, most trusts are established with a few lines of text in a will. While this is good news for those who wish to set up trusts quickly and easily, it is unfortunate for those posed with the task of finding them.

There are a few steps that you can take to locate details of the trust. You have not made clear whether or not you are the executor of your friend’s estate. If so, you will have fairly wide-ranging powers to look through their affairs. If not, you should obviously mention the existence of the trust to the executor if you do not think they are aware of it.

As has been mentioned, trusts are frequently established within an individual’s will. This is the first place that you should look. Have a solicitor look through the document to determine whether or not a trust has been set up, as this type of document can be confusing to the uninitiated.

You should also contact your friend’s solicitor. Trusts are sometimes set up by lodging documents with solicitors or accountants, and they may therefore know more. Similarly, it might be worth enquiring at your friend’s bank; although it is less common now, some individuals used to lodge important documents with their bank managers. This is still fairly common for those with a particularly high net worth.

In conclusion, there isn’t a central body for the registration of trusts. But you stand a good chance of locating the trust by looking closely at the individual’s will, including any codicils or other attached documents, and talking to key people with whom documents may have been lodged.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
Hi I am looking for a trust fund,that I think my dad left is half of the house in ,my step mother didn't go into detail,when my dad died 27years ago ,on the 12th,of,April 1997 know my step mum as died an her daughters haven't said anything to us my step mum died about a month nearly was buried 2weeks ago
Shaz - 26-Mar-24 @ 10:42 AM
Hello i am trying to locate a trust that i think my mother is hiding from me
Larry Jenkins - 25-Jul-21 @ 5:04 AM
Hello i am trying to locate a trust that my mother is hiding from me
Larry Jenkins - 25-Jul-21 @ 5:03 AM
My father left my son a trust fund for him, he is now 27 years old, my father died in the year of 2000. How do I find out about this?
Sally Reeves - 9-Jul-21 @ 5:19 PM
Hi there can you help me locate a trust fund for the Kelly-Sporle family, it was meant to go to my dad but he wouldn’t change his name from Jennings to Kelly-sporle,
Dude - 26-Apr-21 @ 9:55 PM
My mum Barbara West should have received a trust fund in 1959 when she was 21 it was from a pit disaster that happened in 1942 sneyed pit in stoke on trent she never thought about it until she passed away in 2013 and she told me about it and made me promise her I wouldtry to track it it down I am her only daughter
None - 8-Jan-21 @ 1:16 AM
im looking for a old trustfund that was supposed to be set up for myself and two brothers after they got thru in court my s well i called her mom and she was killed in a car crash involving a 18 wheeler and it going to be here or Oklahoma
rebal - 18-Dec-20 @ 9:17 AM
My parents will talks about a trust fund but my trustee wont deal So what do I do
BigD - 23-Sep-20 @ 10:54 AM
Hi my name is Liza. My great grandmother passed away in 2008. She told me that I have a trust in my name which mygreat great grandfather openend for me when he found out that my mother was pregnant with me that was around 1987 I should have gotten it when I was 21 but I was never Given any info about what trust it was or where to go or how to find it I only have my great great grandfathers name and surname how can I find my trust please help.
Meraai - 25-Aug-20 @ 9:48 PM
Hi, When my dad passed away in 2011 my mum put £3000 in to trust for me till I turned 25 years old. The problem is we have l lost all details for who the trust fund was with and I turn 25years old in 20day. How do I find my trust fund? Can toy
Lizzy95 - 12-Aug-20 @ 11:52 AM
hi I'm not sure if any one can help but here goes . my father died in 1968 when I was 3months old he had a fatal accident at work . he left behind my mum and 6 children .we were all left £200 which I suppose in 1968 was a lot of money . however when I was 18 I received off my mum my what you would call inheritance I got £200 . at the time I didn't question this but over the years I have thought about it and you would have thought that over the 18yrs since my dad passed away that this would have increased some what. now what I don't know is , is who we got the money off ., if it was in a trustor if it had been invested . as no body ever mentioned is there any body who would be able to give myself some information as how to go about looking into this . regards kelvin
kel - 4-Aug-20 @ 12:15 PM
Hi my biological father opened a trust fund of £50 for me in 1971- 1975. He sign my adoption paperwork In 1975- December I believe. I only found out about him and the fact I was adopted in 2016.I have since found out he passed away in 2011. With no paperwork how can I trace this trust fund ??
Tiny tray - 13-Jun-20 @ 7:27 PM
Hello , I'm trying to locate a trust I'm the beneficiary of it . Someone just past away and I haven't got the necessary information to locate the trust.Could you please help. Thank you
Lolu - 5-Jun-20 @ 7:58 AM
My mum stayed my grandparents set up a mortgage type trust fund due to mature at age 21. I’m 46 and have not heard a thing. There’s no other relatives to ask. Any ideas? Thanks
Jen - 12-Jan-20 @ 8:40 AM
Que - 2-Jan-20 @ 7:43 AM
I have been left a trust fund by my father but my mother and brother have stole it how can I find out how to find it also they changed my fathers will
Wombal - 5-Nov-19 @ 9:14 AM
Trying to find my daughters government trust fund she was born in December 2002 .My number is 07724944075
None - 4-Nov-19 @ 1:41 AM
Hello many years ago my grandparents set up a trust fund for all grandchildren sadly my nan passed away around 1994 but on many occasions before this stated we had a fund set up we were very close with our grandparents and they doted on us. Very sadly my mum passed away in 1997 followed by my grandad in 1998 which on the day of his resting my aunty informed us that myself and two sisters are to recieve money and my cousin was to recieve there 5 bedroomed home anyway a couple of years pass and we have contact with my aunty who's stated that we were left nothing and Claire everything but here's where it gets strange we went to the private office and received a copy of the will which was short and sweet but no mention of myself my sister's or my mother it looks like we don't even exist in there life's and we were a big part of them. From so.e research the solicitor who dealt with his will has now closed due to fraudulent activity. My question is could they cash our trusts in and how do I find out where this is
Loopy lou - 18-May-19 @ 10:16 AM
I'm hoping some one can help me, growing up my mum mentioned quite a few times in my life my grandadher dad had set up some sort of trust fund for me not long after I was born in 1993. As I got older I grew apart from mum but still had contact with my grandad a lot! ever since I can remember until my grandad sadly passed away quite unexpectedly June 30th last year, and my mum was left everything. Does this mean she has access to the trust fund not just mine the three other grandchildrens too? Also how do I go about finding out if there is some sort of trust fund left to me and if I'm slowed to access it myself??
Jordz - 11-Apr-19 @ 12:40 AM
I was told when I was put into foster care, that my real parents set up an trust fund for me, putting away bits and bobs into an account, I've tried to contact them about it but I just get blanked, if there is anything you can do to help me, then I can use it to put into my son's account for his future thank you very much I hope to hear from you very soon!
Bettina - 11-Mar-19 @ 7:53 AM
Good day I am searching for a Trust named FANIE LOMBARD TRUST which was created for the construction of an old age home in Amsterdam s.a. This was all done around 1950s.We don't know where the trust is and suspect the SAVF are involved. Funds are the main source of concern. We are Social Welfare. Please assist if you can. BE BLESSED Regards ERIC Bell 0844772573
Tingling - 23-Jan-19 @ 3:34 PM
Following the passing of my father I found some certificates for trusts and shares in various companies. Having contacted them I established that to proceed I required probate. All companies noted his death and took copies of the death certificate. I have since obtained probate and having contacted the companies again I have been told no investments can be found. One company eluded to the fact they were trusts and gave me an address to write to, but I was unable to move forward receiving the response no investment found. I did not find his will and the situation is complicated by the fact he lived in Africa and therefore address searches have been unsuccessful. To make matters worse certificates for some of the investments have been stolen and I have been unable to record there theft because I do not have the certificate numbers. I have traced through companies House the companies dealing with the investmentsand been told they are not the registrars. Please advise in respect of trust funds where multiple company mergers have occurred how I can determine the contact and required reference numbers using my 40 year old paoerwork.
Pzy - 15-Jan-19 @ 2:42 PM
I'm a south African,My was half Swazi born in SA,We got married in Swaziland ,We had serious differences that separated us though the business was a special arrangement to let me carry on working until my his 60th,We chose never to divorce as he had other issues,He passed on 2015 All relevant documents are missing ;including the will and my papers are hidden because we had a worker fronted but she ended being the other woman?Upon going to the master of the court she had fraudulently declared I had died then qualified to buried my husband within a week as his wife!She's currently fraudulently living high ignoring my existence,I am just watching looting of my legacy!I'm told she's trying to bribe some lawyer to the trust fund to be paid out in January,The offices of the master were unusually ignoring her lies for the estate?She knows about me but just doing fraud in the open !Hiw she acquired the SA papers &marriage certificate is another story!PLEASE ADVISE!
Nkosazana - 26-Nov-18 @ 12:41 AM
I have found out that I was left a trust fund many years ago. It was from my grandma many years ago..The rest of the family have either deceased or I have lost contact with them due to situations. How can I find out where it is?........I now live in the USA Thank you
Amanda - 17-Sep-18 @ 8:33 PM
Hello my name is Julie Harding i am right on be half of my boyfriend
Julie Harding - 12-Feb-18 @ 6:44 PM
My father passed away without informing me where is the trust fund he left me that he spoke about a lot. How can I track it?
NS - 15-Nov-17 @ 3:01 PM
Viv - Your Question:
HelloMy son was born in 1997 and his grandfather died in 1996. Before he died he said he had created a trust fund for the child (unborn at that point).The grandfather was the father of my husband and we have since divorced.The grandmother no longer speaks to us and will not give any details of the trust fund or even whether it still exists. My sons father will also not speak to us or provide any help. How can we find out? My son turns 21 in 8 months and this is the age the grandfather said it would mature.Thank youViv

Our Response:
There isn't anyway we know of that would help with this other than trying to communicate with relatives.
EstatesOrTrusts - 8-Aug-17 @ 2:28 PM
Hello My son was born in 1997 and his grandfather died in 1996. Before he died he said he had created a trust fund for the child (unborn at that point). The grandfather was the father of my husband and we have since divorced. The grandmother no longer speaks to us and will not give any details of the trust fund or even whether it still exists. My sons father will also not speak to us or provide any help. How can we find out? My son turns 21 in 8 months and this is the age the grandfather said it would mature. Thank you Viv
Viv - 6-Aug-17 @ 5:04 PM
Dennis - Your Question:
I have a two trust funda in my name that both my parents have put in place for me. My father is in prison and my mother has bipolar as are therefore being spiteful and nit allowing me to have them. Could you help or should I get over it?

Our Response:
How old are you? If you're over 18 and the trusts are in your name, seek advice from a legal professional. They may be able to help you access the details of the trusts at the very least.
EstatesOrTrusts - 4-Apr-17 @ 10:10 AM
I have a two trust funda in my name that both my parents have put in place for me. My father is in prison and my mother has bipolar as are therefore being spiteful and nit allowing me to have them. Could you help or should i get over it?
Dennis - 3-Apr-17 @ 4:21 AM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word: