Case studies

Estatesearch Uncovers Unknown Assets for Trethowans

By Estatesearch on January 16th, 2024

Trethowans is a UK Top 150 Law Firm and one of the fastest growing law firms in the South, with offices located in Southampton, Winchester, Sailsbury, Bournemouth, Poole and a base in London.  Offering a range of legal services, the firm provides a customer centric approach with no egos, no waffle and no cut and paste advice.  Trethowans was named in the Times ‘Best Law Firms 2023’ Guide as one of the top 200 legal practices in England and Wales.

Rebeka Clarke, Private Client Solicitor, Trethowans explains:

“We are a welcoming team and treat every client with respect, providing the best advice for their personal circumstances and needs. I’m based in the Southampton office and specialise in Probate, Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney and Estate Administration.

I’d used Estatesearch’s services at my previous firm before joining Trethowans earlier this year and have used the asset searches since joining Trethowans.  I have mainly used Estatesearch’s Financial Profile Search and their facility for placing Section 27 Notices.  I recommend using both to all executors to ensure no assets or liabilities go undiscovered during the process of administering an estate.”

An efficient fact-finding process

Estatesearch’s Financial Profile Search provides a comprehensive and detailed report to support an efficient fact-finding process, helping solicitors quickly build a better understanding of clients’ financial affairs to manage and/or administer an estate effectively. This also helps mitigate against the risk of unknown assets coming to light after distribution.Using information and data from a variety of sources, the resulting report helps support due diligence, with a clear audit trail to demonstrate the steps undertaken to identify all assets and liabilities.  The search includes AML and identity trace, Liability Search, Financial Asset Search, Company Directorships, and, in the Financial Profile Premium, an Unclaimed Asset Search which includes up to 40 additional pension and insurance providers to help locate forgotten accounts, unknown assets, policies and shareholdings.  All subjects are automatically enrolled with the Vulnerability Registration Service to prevent fraud and financial abuse against the estate too.

Ensure the maximum benefit for the beneficiaries

“More often than not, I have found that the Financial Profile search doesn’t find anything additional that the family were unaware of, but it puts their mind at rest that everything has been done to check.  For us, it shows all reasonable steps have been taken to identify assets and we have a full financial picture to administer the estate correctly.

“However, recently I worked on a case where Estatesearch’s Financial Profile Search uncovered unknown assets worth £14K.  This was made up of a portfolio of stocks and shares worth £9K and a further investment bond with another provider worth £5k which the executors did not appear to be aware of or had forgotten about.  The executors had been fairly sure that there were no further assets other than those they had already made contact with but took on our recommendation to complete a search and were surprised at the result.  It meant we could ensure the maximum benefit for the beneficiaries from the estate.

“I have historically ordered the Financial Profile Search and placed Section 27 Notices within Estatesearch’s secure, online portal.  This is free to use, and only searches/services are chargeable.  It’s super easy and cuts down time on administration because everything is in one place.  Less time spent on administration means a more cost-effective service for our clients.

“I very much like how Estatesearch conducts their searches and reports on their findings. The easy to read report notifies me of responses from financial institutions and provides a clear audit trail.  The team at Estatesearch are also very helpful and regularly provide updates.  The company appears to be continuously refining its provision for searches and services and these developments are helpful.”

Originally published on Today’s Wills & Probate, 11th January 2024

Give us a call today, or send a message and we'll get back to you straight away.

0330 900 1700
[email protected]