TransUnion teams up with PSaS to deliver new deceased credit file report

Probate Searches & Services Ltd (PSaS) has selected TransUnion (formerly Callcredit) to provide account information checks for its new credit report service to help probate professionals settle estates more quickly and accurately.

PSaS is a new business servicing the legal sector with consumer data solutions to help better manage estate administration of probate cases and assist in managing the financial affairs of incapacitated and vulnerable clients.

Its Deceased Credit File Report (DCFR) is the first of its kind in the UK to be offered independently and provides probate professionals with a single report where they can clearly see any outstanding creditors an estate has, including bank accounts, credit cards, loans and payday lenders.

The traditional probate and wider estate administration process can be difficult to manage, demanding considerable time and effort. Often, the relatives of the deceased are unaware of the full extent of their loved one’s finances, so probate professionals spend many hours contacting institutions in order to settle an estate. This new report not only improves efficiency for legal professionals, but also reduces the strain on executors and relatives.

Given the time savings and the associated benefits of that, it’s not surprising that PSaS has seen huge demand for the new service. When it launched at the end of last year, more than 200 clients signed up within the first fortnight, and the numbers continue to grow steadily.

Adrian Hutchin, marketing manager of PSaS, explains: “It’s hard to believe that in an age where people can easily check their own credit file online that a similar service doesn’t exist for the purpose of probate and wider estate administration. The historic process around this is very manual and time-consuming. It’s also intrusive and usually requires a friend or relative of the deceased to locate and gather documents. That in itself can be difficult with much of the detail being hidden in password-protected accounts that can prove hard to access.

“This new service has the potential to cut probate timescales by a significant amount whilst also reducing the stress for friends and relatives of the deceased.”

Matt Jones, head of partnerships at TransUnion, comments: “Probate is a complicated process that requires accurate information. The data we are providing to PSaS will help probate professionals satisfy a number of statutory and due diligence requirements.

“Personal finances and financial health are often seen as taboo subjects, and executors of a will may not be aware of the full extent of the deceased’s finances.  The new report allows the probate professional to easily check the credit file and perform other searches to gain a more complete and accurate picture, whilst also making it much less stressful for the executor or family members involved.”

PSaS uses TransUnion data alongside other sources of publicly available information (including land registry data), to provide current information on outstanding accounts (individual and joint), orders, and judgements. It has the ability to highlight current bank and building society accounts with an overdraft facility, loans, credit cards and mortgages, as well as items like credit facilities with retailers and insurance companies. The report will also show any accounts currently in dispute as well as any IVAs, Bankruptcy Orders, CCJs, Trust Deeds, and Sequestration Orders.