Missing Persons

Locate People - UK & Worldwide

Using Research Associates to find a missing person

Research Associates was first established in August 1977 as a specialist detective agency for the location of missing persons, and has since evolved into an approachable, highly professional and multi-faceted intelligence and investigation organisation with a reputation for delivering unparalleled results for its clients. Finding missing persons is an exacting art, requiring extensive knowledge of open source intelligence, field work and the legal acquisition of private information along with other more traditional tracing techniques. We are adept at finding people in a legal, confidential, sensitive and cost-effective manner.

With over 40 years' experience serving private citizens, company executives, entrepreneurs, business and public sector organisations, Research Associates has a unique wealth of industry knowledge and experience, and provides an unrivalled degree of customer service.

  • Tracing/Locating people every day since 1977
  • Highly experienced and professional detectives that specialise in finding missing persons
  • A full back up intelligence service using only dedicated experts
  • Investigation utilising both state of the art and traditional techniques
  • Complete worldwide and local coverage
  • Exclusive 24-48 hour fast response service
  • Follow up service where required
  • Excellent standards of practice
  • Structured evidence reports
  • A dedicated Case Manager throughout

We strongly recommend you call us in the first instance rather than email, which is not the best medium to discuss highly personal and confidential information.

Call 020 7243 1000 to have a brief initial discussion focused on resolving your situation.

Common Missing Persons Investigations

  • Debtors, including people who may be actively avoiding being located
  • Individuals who have left home and ‘disappeared’
  • Locating long-lost friends or colleagues to re-establish contact
  • Parent and sibling searches for those adopted at birth
  • Location of individuals for wills and inheritance
  • Missing heirs
  • Searches for family members given up for adoption at birth
  • Locating company directors relating to personal guarantees or personal debt
  • Locating children who have become estranged or have disappeared
  • Missing or lost family members and long lost friends
  • Locating missing witnesses
  • Locating former partners/spouses, boyfriends/girlfriends to re-establish contact
  • Tracing estranged family members or former partners
  • Since each investigation is unique, and due to the sensitive nature of everything we do, before commencement of any assignment we strongly suggest you call us directly. By talking through the outline of your current situation in confidence and by asking just a few non-intrusive questions, our experienced detectives can quickly comprehend your specific requirements and how we can best be of assistance. This will also enable you to understand how we work and for us to give a clear plan of action, costs and timeframe.
  • Call us on: 020 7243 1000

Finding Missing People Since 1977

Since being established in 1977, Research Associates has been offering a specialised service locating the current confirmed whereabouts of missing persons both throughout the UK and internationally; where required, also supplying valuable background information (including other contact details, place of employment, contact telephone numbers or email addresses as well as specific intelligence relating to the supplied instruction) all contained in a written legal report.

We avoid basing research solely on database or any other sole source of information (which may not be current), preferring to fully substantiate our findings before reporting. We routinely find partners, children, relatives, family, friends, as well as debtors (if you are specifically tracing a debtor, please see our ‘Debtor Tracing’ page, as there are further resources we may access which we may not have the right to use under other circumstances).

When looking to find people who are missing or that you have lost touch with, family, friends, or a debtor who owes money, Research Associates offer a comprehensive and successful trace/locate service for the tracing of missing people within the UK, Europe and internationally. Our highly experienced private investigators successfully locate people with minimal information, often under difficult circumstances; we are happy to assist in the more complex cases where other investigators may be unable or unwilling to help.

Research Associates’ network of wide-ranging resources allow us the best possible chance of finding a missing person, or people who are actively avoiding being found.

Locating People Is Our Core Business

‘Missing persons’ investigations are dealt with on a strictly confidential basis. The depth of service and cost will reflect individual requirements, which depends on the situation and possible location of the subject. We assure confidentiality at all times; the subject remains unaware of our enquiries, which are routinely conducted with absolute sensitivity and discretion at all times. As with all cases, Research Associates ensures we keep clients apprised of progress of their case and consult them on any crucial decision.

The cost of finding people essentially depends on the information that is available about the person’s circumstances and therefore the complexity of the investigation and searches required to locate a person. Part of our service is to ensure we find the most linear, straightforward approach to finding a person. This is accomplished by asking the right questions before starting enquiries. Having up to date background facts reduces the cost of investigation in comparison to the more intricate requirements for locating people whose full identity is unknown, tracing birth parents or tracing people internationally.

Locating a missing person is often an intricate or delicate operation requiring sensitivity, tact, and professional understanding. Research Associates reputation relies on us creating a considerate and supportive environment and carrying out our services with discretion and professionalism at all times.

Searching for Family Members

Research Associates know that searching for family members needs to be approached with sensitivity. We discreetly and effectively search for family members by conducting very thorough, yet careful and sensitive searches on client’s behalf. We work on the principle that the subject of our trace/locate service will at all times remain unaware of our background enquiries. We have been unobtrusively locating people since being established in 1977. We have found that a discreet and sensitive approach is essential in these sensitive circumstances.


People who owe money often disappear with the intention of avoiding payment, often attempting to hide their current whereabouts using false or altered names, not registering for services associated with their residential address, or going to the extent of changing their registered name (by deed poll).

Research Associates effectively trace people as a matter of routine, even in difficult circumstances where individuals are actively trying to remain hidden. Allow our highly experience private investigators to explain how we may assist.

For legal reasons, it is helpful to formally informed us when we are locating a debtor, as we are then able to make use of helpful legislative consents, which allow us legal access to otherwise prohibited databases, some of which we may not have the right to use under other circumstances.

Debtor Tracing

Research Associates was first established in August 1977 as a private intelligence agency specialising in locating missing debtors and tracing missing persons. Over time we have evolved into an approachable, highly professional intelligence and investigation agency.

Only experienced specialists in the field of locating missing persons are used by Research Associates. Where traditional tactics are unable to track down a current address, or other modes of contact, Research Associates are able to deploy special intelligence methodology (not typically employed elsewhere) to track down even the most difficult to locate individuals, locally or internationally.

Since every investigation is essentially unique and because of the delicate nature of all we do, before commencement of any assignment we suggest you call and speak with us. We find by talking through the outline of your current circumstance in confidence and asking just a few non-intrusive questions, we become fully able to comprehend your specific requirement. This will also enable you to get to know how we work and for us to give a clear plan of action, costs, turn around time and to decide whether you wish to instruct us.