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Probate Research is a largely unregulated industry with no barrier to entry. No qualifications are required, nor any evidence of relevant training needed. In fact, anyone can set up their own firm quicker than you can say “Who Do You Think You Are?”.

Which is quite worrying when you think about it.

The danger is if there are any issues from a legal professional instructing a probate researcher who is not up to the job, then the client is going to put the blame squarely at the legal professional’s door.

At Anglia Research, we quickly identified the need for some form of regulation for the probate genealogy industry to help tackle such scenarios. That is why we have been consistently campaigning to help raise standards across the sector which has seen substantial growth in recent years.

Without any independent regulation, there are no checks and balances for those who access the market – the legal profession, the public sector and individuals. There is no true accountability.


Regulation: Institute of Paralegals

At the beginning of this year, we as a company became regulated by the Institute of Paralegals (IoP). Becoming a corporate member of the IoP effectively ends our search for an independent regulator. The industry cannot continue to hide behind self-regulation or in some cases, no regulation whatsoever.

For us, independent regulation is the only way forward.

For our clients, this means that in addition to the guarantees offered by our own code of conduct, and those through our BEST corporate membership, they will have the reassurance of connecting with a culture in which accountability is fundamental.

Anglia Research employs more accredited genealogists, legally qualified and independently regulated staff than any other UK probate research firm. We have a commitment to our profession – we employ seventeen staff who hold Professional Paralegal Register practising certificates – and in addition, have five members of staff who are Association of Genealogists and Researchers in Archives (AGRA) accredited.

In addition to this accreditation and qualifications, our Case Managers have a combined total of over 270 years of experience. We know that your best guarantee of a legally sound outcome lies in the calibre of our team. Our investment in accredited staff is your assurance.

Transfer of regulation to the Institute of Paralegals commenced at the start of next year, with all existing paralegals qualifications and certifications issued by the Institute of Paralegals carrying over as part of the CILEX acquisition of the Professional Paralegal Register.


Conclusion: Instruct a True Professional

Ultimately, we are heavily focused on case manager training and accreditation because we know how important it is to give comfort to legal professionals and individuals using our services. Not every probate research firm has taken this view and thus, not all probate genealogy firms are created equally.

So, overall, it pays to use the services of an experienced, accredited firm that has experienced, qualified employees to undertake the work needed in a professional and legally sound manner.

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