Genealogy Services for Probate Attorneys, Estate Administrators, and Title Companies

Texas Based Forensic Genealogist/Expert Witness

What I Do...

My name is David Clare.  As a forensic genealogist, I assist probate attorneys in locating missing  heirs, in Texas, the United States and abroad.  Through extensive  research, I can provide court-ready documentation and source evidence to establish a list of living heirs along with their contact information.

I am available to appear in court as an expert witness, and have helped many attorneys with a high success rate.

I specialize in breaking brick walls.  Over the past twenty-five years I have developed an uncanny ability to find lost heirs.  

Our Services...

Contact Info...

For more information and a pricing quote, contact me below


phone:  832-444-9116


"David Clare has worked with me on several cases.  He is able to quickly find heirs in the probate arena.  David is professional and responsive.  He is our go-to Genealogist."

Kerri L. Graham

Senior Attorney/Owner at The Graham Law Group

"I couldn’t be happier with the research services performed by David M. Clare. Not only did he find some great information about my family that I wasn’t able to, but he also did it quickly and for a very reasonable rate. His reports were professional, detailed, and clear, with electronic photocopies of original records. I would recommend him to anyone and would also use him again without hesitation if the need arises."

Ora Smith, author of Unacknowledged,
The possible Biological Mother of Howard Hughes 


David Clare (author)- With 30 plus years as a  forensic genealogist, I am still learning new ways to uncover heirs and family information for my clients.  I help law firms and real estate title companies conduct genealogy investigation reports for court cases and title deed clearances in real estate properties.  These short blogs are little tidbits of information  and success stories for thought processing brick walls in genealogy research.

What's in a Name?

(5/30/2023) by David Clare 

Many years ago, when doing my own genealogy, I learned a valuable lesson about people's names in documents. For a few years I tried to find an ancestor that lived in Battle Creek, Michigan, in a census record.  It wasn't until looking for another name in the same town a few years later, I scrolled the entire page and found my Clare name spelled Claire.  Today many websites like Ancestry will give you alternate buttons for spelling.  Don't rely on them for spelling all variations though, or you might miss your chance to find that brick wall missing heir.  Happy Heir Hunting!


Lost heir- nearly declared dead!

(6/5/2023) by David Clare 

Working a probate case, I needed to find a lost heir.  It had been several years since anyone had heard from her and the other parties in the case wanted to declare her deceased and disperse the funds.  In researching the heir, I found some papers her students had done for her online many years ago and thus discovered that she had been a graduate asst. at a Chicago area college.  As the court day approached, I tried one last time to contact her ex-husband and the new wife answered the phone.  She said "I think she moved to Australia."  Within five minutes, I found her contact information at an Australian college and quickly called my client.  I said to him, "Don't let the other party declare her dead, she's not six feet under, she's just down under!"  She was in Perth Australia!  I could hear the firm in the background celebrating.  I always ask for all details no matter how small, they just may break down that brick wall for finding someone. 

When Elbows turn to Nees!

(6/13/2023) by David Clare 

Some cases flow smoothly from start to finish ... Then there are cases that require more "elbow grease", in other words much more work.  Such is the case for me finding a sweet elderly lady from California.  Women often change their maiden (nee) name to their spouses last name when they marry.  No surprise there!  I found a marriage certificate for this lady, which listed her maiden name, or so I thought.  The problem was no records were found of her prior to the marriage. That to me was a bit odd.  After much researching, it turns out that she married two more times after that certificate.  one of them did have her real maiden name.  Now I was able to find records prior to the first marriage certificate.  I eventually found her living in California at age 95 very much alive.  It was gratifying at the trial that the court called her, and I was able to speak with her.  She was happily surprised that she would be receiving some part of the estate.  Always dig deeper, even when it seems the research is at a dead end.

How do you research a ghost heir?

(6/27/2023) by David Clare 

It is hard enough to find some heirs when they exist, but what about the nonexistent ones?  I was working on a case where one heir heard about another relative by name but never actually met them- family talk. I created a timeline of documents for the family he was alleged to be born into -  including locations, census records, and all vital records for parents and children. With the timeline completed, not one record mentioned the alleged heir’s name. I provided enough documentation to convince the court that this person was a ghost heir, they did not exist! 

They're moving again! Let me be Direct(ory) with you!

(7/9/2023) by David Clare 

Our ancestors moved around more than we think! Changing apartments, cities, or states…  Directories can be big game changers when pinpointing their location.  Genealogy websites may have directories where you can type in the ancestor’s name, many for multiple years. When finding them in one, don't give up if they are not in next year's directory.  When I look at directories, I type in just the last name and go through each year for several years.  I find that transcribers skip many people's first name when transcribing.  Type in just the last name and click the online directory image.  You will see many with the last names that are not in the transcriber's list. Researchers often move on thinking that they are not there - when they are!!

It’s in the details!  NOT ALWAYS

(7/28/2023) by David Clare 

Ancestry websites have great tools to cut down the number of people with the same name if you have some details of them to start.  It saves time to find the person you seek!  Not always though!  Too much detail can make you pass over info

rmation for that person.  I research it both ways!  I will be very detailed to start, then try it with less detail and I find documents and information that does not show up with the more detailed documents.  Try it next time you are ancestry hunting!

What is the opposite of a Grim Reaper?

(6/27/2024) by David Clare

The answer?  A forensic genealogist!!  Let me explain.  Forensic Genealogists are researchers that sort of bring the dead back to life, at least through their living ancestors. A regular genealogist goes back in time to recapture long lost deceased relatives.  Forensic genealogists go the opposite way and try to locate living descendants of the deceased.  This is very valuable for probate lawyers, title companies, or possible family reunions that have lost track their living kin.  If this service is what you need, then contact me, the Delightful Reaper!