Index to death duty registers1796 - 1903
Death Duty Registers
The Archive of Indexes to Death Duty Registers contains digitised images of the original indexes created by the Estate Duty Office (later to become the Inland Revenue) of all wills and administrations attracting Death Duties from all the Probate Courts in England and Wales. The original indexes are held by The National Archives, London, England, under the series title IR27 and are made available here under license
This valuable consolidated index is particularly useful to genealogists and family historians.
Search tips for Death Duty Registers 1796–1903
This search allows you to view the original indexes of death duty registrations.
Searching is free, and you will be charged one credit for each record that you choose to view from the search results.
The indexing uses the first and last surnames alphabetically to create a name range. The surnames are recorded using only the first letter of the surname or the first three letters of the surname – depending on the years searched. When a search is performed, the system will search for the surname range that will contain the surname you are searching for, should there be an entry for it. Please note that there is no guarantee that the name you are looking for will appear on the pages provided in the results
This is a complex dataset and we recommend that you read more about the records in our help and advice section
Searching for a will or administration will differ depending on the year(s) you are searching. The period can be divided into three separate eras, and the method and content of record differ between them. Divisions exist between 1796 – 1823, 1812 – 1857, and 1857 – 1903. To understand more about these records, refer to the section in help and advice
Enter the surname and year for the person you are searching.
Click on 'Search' to find the records.
Tip: Entries are listed in order of date of probate or issue of grant and not date of death; therefore, you should always check the indexes for a few years after the date of death.
Exact surnames have not been used as part of the indexing process. As a result you can use wildcards on this search. If you are looking for a name that can be spelt several ways, such as Brown you will also be shown anyone recorded as Browne, or Clark and Clarke, for example. Entries are not listed in alphabetical order.
You will be presented with a list of your search results. You will most likely find you are presented with many results and you may have to view quite a few records to find the result you want, unless you know which probate court was used.
Tip: The courts local to where your ancestors lived should be searched first, or if the estate was likely to have covered more than one county or jurisdiction try the Prerogative Courts of Canterbury, as this had overriding jurisdiction throughout England. The Prerogative Court of York also covered a much wider geographical range than its name implies.
When you enter a surname in the search box, the results will indicate those pages where the surname will most likely appear. You need to browse these pages to see if there is an entry for the surname you are looking for. We cannot guarantee that an entry exactly matching the surname you are looking for will be on every page.
From the search results displayed, scroll through to find the entry you wish to view.
Choose which entry you'd like to see and click on View, the original image will appear in a separate window. The credits will be deducted from your account.
To view the image you must already have registered and signed in the site, download the DjVu viewer and have credits in your findmypast.co.uk account.
You can return to this image at any point during your current session, or save it to your hard disk to view at any time.
Once you have found the registration you are looking for remember to note down all the details, including the month of registration and the index number on the left hand side. You find that more information is recorded in more recent records. If you haven't found what you are looking for, you may need to redefine your search.
For a list of courts click here
If you find a record of a will registered in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, you should be able to find the will online at The National Archives Documents Online site.