What Do We Do?

How Can Forensic Genealogy Help You?


According to the Dallas Bar Association, “Forensic genealogists can assist in many different fields to resolve questions of kinship and heirship. Real estate and mineral title issues often need to be researched through several generations to locate living heirs. Immigration attorneys may need to establish kinship to a U.S. citizen or help a client apply for dual citizenship. Probate attorneys and executors may need to find lost and missing heirs. Attorneys may need expert review of another genealogist’s work or an expert witness. Proactive attorneys handling guardianships, wills, estates and trusts may want to include genealogical documentation as part of their client’s pre-planning process for the future distribution of property. There are dozens of different legal reasons a client may need a formal report to prove who they are and how they are related to others."


We primarily work in three main areas.  Please click to learn more:


Probate and Ad Litem Research

Unclaimed Property Research

Family History Research


Research Strategy

FMO Research leverages all types of research skills and techniques to secure the best possible results.  This is especially important in successful forensic research.


In most states, intestate succession statutes require that the rightful heirs be descendants of the deceased person’s grandparents.  A surviving spouse is first to inherit or there is a split between the surviving spouse and the children.  Next comes children, then parents, then siblings, then aunts and uncles, then cousins.


In order to track both backwards and forward in time, traditional genealogical skills are not enough, modern tracing skills are also not enough, both are required for full spectrum success.


  • The year 1850 was the first year the United States census included the names and ages of all the members of a household.  Research from before this time depends heavily on land and property records, probate records including wills, bible records, tax records, church records, etc.  Find My Origins obtains these records by visiting repositories such as NARA and other government archives, states/county courthouses, local genealogical societies, and major genealogical libraries such the Family History Library, the Allen County Public Library, the Library of Congress, the National Daughters of the American Revolutionary Library, the New England Historic Genealogical Society Research Library and others.


  • The years 1850-1940 are the years after detailed census records began and before the current United States privacy period.  A plethora of records became available during this time frame such as detailed birth, marriage, and death records, immigration and naturalization records including alien registration files, newspapers including birth/marriage announcements and obituaries, etc.


  • The years 1940-1990 are the most difficult years forensically speaking.  Those are the years now considered private by most United States governmental jurisdictions, and before computerized skip tracing databases began. This period must be approached by both traditional and modern methods.  Newspapers, probate records, official records such as deeds, and records accessible by Freedom of Information Act Requests are heavily leveraged.


  • The years 1990 to present represent the new computer age.  FMO Research has access to many restricted and/or subscription databases, such as investigative resources, historical databases, and newspaper archives.
Call us at 845-399-7058 or 801-833-3520 if you have questions or would like to schedule a consultation.




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