THREE North Yorkshire MPs are lobbying the Prime Minister to change guardianship laws for missing people in light of the Claudia Lawrence case.

Julian Sturdy, York Outer MP, Rachael Maskell, York Central MP, and Kevin Hollinrake, Thirsk and Malton MP, have written a joint letter to David Cameron calling for a new law to be included in the Queen's Speech.

The proposed legislation, increasingly known as ‘Claudia’s Law’ in memory of the York chef who disappeared in the city in 2009, would help families manage the property of their loved ones when they go missing.

At present the MPs say that when a person disappears their family is left unable to properly manage their financial affairs because banks and other third parties can only deal with their customers directly.

This is clearly not possible when that person has gone missing.

Families' trauma is added to as the legal loophole leaves them unable to cancel direct debits or ensure that mortgage payments are made.

In March 2015, justice minister Lord Faulks committed the Government to creating a new legal status to assist families who find themselves in this situation.

The MPs say a year has passed with very little progress which is why they are now calling on the Government to deliver on its promises.

In a joint statement, they said: "We are hopeful that this desperately needed legislation will be included in the Queen’s Speech in May.

"The Government have already pledged their support to this cause and recognised the problem that exists, and now it must deliver for the families of missing people right across the UK.

“When Claudia Lawrence went missing back in 2009 her family discovered first-hand the practical challenges of dealing with a missing person’s affairs. This added burden is completely unnecessary and we feel very strongly that change must be delivered as soon as possible.

“As Yorkshire MPs we each feel that we have a duty to Claudia and her family to deliver these changes; Julian is Claudia’s father's MP, Rachael would have been Claudia’s MP, and Kevin is Claudia’s mother's MP.

"We will continue to bang the drum on this issue until the much needed legal protections are introduced for families of missing people.”

Figures from the charity Missing People show there are currently 2,215 adults who have been missing for three months or longer in the UK.

The letter has strong cross-party support and has received the backing of 78 MPs who represent constituencies right across the United Kingdom.