20 Feb 2018

Case study: A Case of Mistaken Identity?

Alison McCormick of GA Solicitors in Plymouth asked us for help with the estate of Rose Denham (née Brown). Rose had left a gift to a niece, Susan Brown.

The problem

Alison’s difficulty was that beyond identifying Susan as Rose’s niece, the will was otherwise, well, not much help. Alison would need help to correctly identify Susan, locate her and satisfy the legacy.

The solution

Our brief was to locate Susan or document her death had it occurred. Had Susan predeceased, the gift would fail; had she survived Rose and died subsequently, her own estate would benefit. To identify Susan, we’d need to rebuild Rose’s immediate family tree, documenting the births of all her numerous siblings and their children – Rose’s nephews and nieces. Given the extremely common family name (Brown), we thought we’d need eight hours to complete the job. Alison asked us to start work.

The outcome

Our investigation showed that Rose had no niece born as Susan Brown, and none named Susan who’d taken the name Brown on marriage. However, she did have a niece born as Susan Page. She was the daughter of Rose’s sister, Mary Johnson, formerly Page, née Brown. We located and contacted Susan and she confirmed her relationship to Rose and Alison’s clients were satisfied we’d found the right person. To be on the safe side, they also bought an Insured Missing Beneficiary Indemnity policy too. We were glad to report that the matter took just under five hours rather than eight to complete so the cost to the estate was lower than expected.


Alison said
I would not hesitate to use Moore Probate Research in the future and find their services to be not only cost effective but very professional.  It is nice to find a company who will work with you as a team to resolve any issues that arise when dealing with the administration of an estate and to help find the best solution for all concerned.

All names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals.