Over a year ago we found an estate listed on the treasury solicitors website and started research into the family to find potential beneficiaries. The deceased person had outlived her parents and her siblings. All of her siblings either died as bachelor’s or spinsters, as no issue can be found and it appears no marriages for any of them.
The deceased persons will that created the partial intestacy her father was born in the 1880’ and he was one of 12 issue, so you can imagine the size of the family tree.
The firm of solicitors that originally administered the estate has subsequently been taken over and have a new name, so last April we submitted a claim the solicitor who was listed on the Bona Vacantia Website as the people to submit a claim to, which was a success which we were told was successful.
The Treasury solicitors sent the firm of solicitors the balances on the account which the solicitors have had in their possession up to this day, we were informed that they had the money by a legal assistant in the company.
Since them every time we have asked for an update we have hit brick walls, the solicitor said that they were going to get missing beneficiary insurance as he wants to protect the executor, which we fully understand. The legal assistant even sent us a list of the requirements from a company of what they required, we even sent them as a pdf a copy of the family tree, which you can appreciate is rather large. We heard nothing so we approached the Oxford Probate Registry to see if they would issue a second grant, that way they could have paid the money over to us and we could have got on and distributed the estate, but Oxford said they would not issue a second grant.
After asking the question on the technical board previously we were advised to send a letter to the executor pointing out their responsibilities, which we did and even gave the executor a break down on what had been happening. We did ask if the executor was instructing the solicitor or vice versa. The solicitor who is meant to be dealing with the case phoned us and was very unprofessional in the way that he dealt us on the telephone, it was like we were naughty children.
I even said to him that we might send him all the details and he can pay the estate out, and we will invoice him, to which he said he would not pay our account, which I do not think is very good for a solicitor to adopt that sort of attitude.
It seems as if he does not want to hand over the estate for us to distribute, as I feel that there is something in it that we have found all the beneficiaries of which we have found about 80, and that this was something that should have happened 20 years ago. The firm of solicitors have not been very helpful from the start, when we first contacted them they even denied any knowledge of the case even though the treasury solicitors listed them as executors.
Can anyone suggest a way for us to get the funds and for us to distribute the funds to the beneficiaries we are getting calls and enquiries all the time and all we can say is that we are waiting for the solicitor to make a decision?
A2Z Probate Research Ltd