Daniel Curran, Finders International: “Reuniting long lost family members is the best part of being an Heir Hunter” - The Evesham Observer

Daniel Curran, Finders International: “Reuniting long lost family members is the best part of being an Heir Hunter”

Evesham Editorial 22nd May, 2023 Updated: 7th Jun, 2023   0

Danny curran and his team at Finders International Probate Genealogists spend their days searching for the relatives of unclaimed estates and are a main firm on the much-loved BBC One daytime television programme: Heir Hunters.

In the UK, when someone dies without a will (intestate), their property passes to their closest living relatives. However, if there are no known relatives, or if the relatives cannot be traced, the property will eventually be claimed by the Crown as ownerless property (bona vacantia).

Daniel Curran comments: “Our team works tirelessly to ensure that unclaimed estates are given to the rightful heirs. The money really can change lives, but when we play a part in reuniting long lost family members using our skills and resources – that is the very best part of the job for me.”

Back in 2016 Finders International united two brothers for the first time as elderly gentlemen, Jimmy aged 80 and Fred aged 78, after seeing a plea for help online from Fred’s daughter, Theresa.




Jimmy and Fred O’Donnell spent nearly their whole lives believing they were an only child. Both had had difficult childhoods growing up in Ireland and neither of them knew their mother.

Their Irish mother gave birth out of wedlock, first to Jimmy, who was placed in an orphanage, and later to Fred, who grew up in a Catholic boy’s institution. Both boys grew up completely unaware of each other’s existence, and their mother was sent to one of Ireland’s notorious Magdalene laundries, where she remained as a ‘fallen woman’ for the rest of her life.


This wonderfully touching and emotional story reached an amazing conclusion once Finders International were invited to help the family.

Daniel Curran continues; “The brothers regularly visited each other after their first meeting, but sadly, Jimmy passed away a short time after, due to health issues relating to coronavirus.

Although the global pandemic kept the brothers apart in the final stages, it was an absolute pleasure being able to reunite the O’Donnell brothers and I will never forget their joy at meeting for the first time after 80 years apart. Such a lovely family.”

Winners of ‘Best UK Probate Research Firm 2023’, Danny’s team at Finders International are some of the most experienced and qualified genealogists in the industry and experts in tracing people and assets worldwide, using a variety of methods.

Finders International are also regulated by the International Association of Professional Probate Researchers (IAPPR). If you have been contacted by an Heir Hunter, and you are concerned as to whether the company is legitimate, Daniel Curran shares his top tips on how to protect yourself against potential probate research scammers in this recent post.

Danny ends with: “More people are living alone which will only lead to more assets remaining unclaimed, especially across borders. We want to work with the rest of the world, raising standards and awareness for the greater good. We’re in the good news business after all.”

You can contact the Finders team via their website at: www.findersinternational.co.uk/contact or call 0207 490 4935.

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