Using wills and probate records for genealogy can lead to unexpected “inheritances” of your own: clues about identity of relatives, wealth, personal belongings, and family relationships.
Forensic genealogy is genealogical research conducted for the purpose of assisting in legal matters. A forensic genealogist can be invaluable in the probate process. In testate cases, there are several reasons research might be required, i.e., the estate might not be able to locate an heir named in the will.
Probate research deals with finding heirs and proving their right to an inheritance. Probate researchers are also called heir hunters, heir searchers, and forensic genealogists. Intestacy laws vary enormously from one country to another, and in the US, they also vary from state to state.