Nov 4 / Jon Hocker

Meet the Contributor- Claire Miller

Meet the founder & Owner of Langton Genealogy, established in 2010, Claire Miller.

Claire specialises in supporting the legal industry by assisting in intestacy matters and locating missing beneficiaries. After being Highly Commended for several years, Claire also became the Best Probate Research Paralegal & Paralegal of the Year – North & Midlands, at the National Paralegal Awards 2023. Langton Genealogy was also Highly Commended at the 2022 National Paralegal Awards, in the Best Probate Research Organisation category.  

Claire is also a huge advocate for Dementia UK and with a colleague runs regular Dementia Friends sessions online. Claire is published in Today’s Wills and Probate and a reviewer for Who Do You Think You Are magazine. There was also a case study about a case worked on highlighted on the National Will Register website.

While contributing her courses for the site (access her courses here), we took the opportunity to get her perspective on some of the burning questions around the legal sector and professional development.

Read on as she shares why she loves working in the legal industry, how she has learnt from her mistakes and what she would like to change about the legal industry.  
Do you have a favourite failure? Something that didn’t go so well at the time, but has actually benefited you in the long run?
My favourite failure is the very first Bona Vacantia estate I dealt with.
I couldn’t locate the deceased’s birth certificate, for quite some time, until I contacted the informant on his death certificate who had a copy of the birth certificate! They only realised when I spoke to them that the last name on the document was different to the one the deceased used during their lifetime.
Once I had this new information, I was able to locate two half-blood siblings, who sadly didn’t know anything about the deceased; they had never met him. Their mother had mental health issues and had told them about him, but they hadn’t believed her.
I was really pleased to be able to get some photographs of the deceased for them and connect them with a very good friend who was able to tell them all about him.

If you could go back to the beginning of your legal career, what’s the top piece of advice you would give yourself?
It’s okay to make a mistake; just be honest about it, apologise and resolve things as quickly and efficiently, as possible.

If you could change anything about the legal industry, what would it be?
The area of law I practice in is Wills and Probate, a lot of regulation was introduced in 1837 nearly 200 years ago – I think it’s time for an update.

What advice would you give to legal professionals looking to further their career?
Go for it – I love working in the legal profession.

What have you done in your career that has made the biggest difference?”
I have had my business since 2010 and worked on a lot of family trees. The part of the job which makes the biggest difference is reconnecting families and quite often answering questions that they have had for many years.