Verification of the list of entitled beneficiaries 

The list of the entitled beneficiaries determines, in accordance with the orders of successors defined by the French Civil Code (Article 734), the list of persons who are heirs. Probate genealogists are appointed by notaries to verify and certify the list of the entitled beneficiaries. Find out about our service.

Why use a probate genealogist to verify and certify the list of entitled beneficiaries? 

The notary is generally able to identify and establish the exact number, quality, and order of heirs in the certificate of heirship. To do this, he or she relies on a certain amount of information and documents that known and apparent heirs must provide (family record book, marriage certificate, etc.). 

When the notary is in doubt (e.g., an estate has an international dimension, beneficiaries whose degree of kinship is remote, no family record book), he or she will call upon the expertise of the probate genealogist to verify the list of the entitled beneficiaries, so this notary can draw up the resulting certificate of heirship with certainty. 

The steps taken for certification purposes by ADD Associés in verifying the list of entitled beneficiaries 

Preliminary step: the ADD Associés reviews the estate documents  

The notary, the court-appointed administrator, the heirs or any other professional sends ADD Associés the information required for an inventory of assets and an assessment of any potential issues that may arise. This step allows us to draw up an estimate that meets the genealogical and financial requirements of the estate. 

Step 1: the estimate is approved 

Once the estimate is approved, verification can begin. 

Step 2: the probate genealogist starts research  

The research phase is a complex and rigorous process, requiring a high level of expertise, specific investigative techniques, regulated and waived administrative authorizations, and the human and financial resources to find potential heirs anywhere around the globe. 

Step 3: The genealogist certifies the list of the entitled beneficiaries 

At the end of the research, the genealogist certifies the list of entitled beneficiaries, having ensured its completeness. He or she draws up a certified genealogical chart, for which he is legally and financially liable, and forwards it to the liquidating notary. The notary can then draw up the certificate of heirship required to recognize the rights of the heirs with the utmost confidence and legal certainty. 


Fees are set at a flat-rate in the pre-approved estimate. Should the family history (e.g., elements of foreignness unknown at the start of the process) be such that ADD Associés incurs additional costs, a prior supplemental agreement will be requested.

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