Filipp & Maria Schwlatsch

Many of our cases involve complex genealogies and interesting insights into history. Some of them also include convoluted legal issues. The combined estates of Filipp & Maria Schwlatsch and Franc Seme had all three.

Marija Seme was born in 1914 in a small town in Slovenia. She married Filipp Savlac in Serbia in 1934. Filipp was born in Starominskaya, Russia, in 1901. The couple immigrated to America a few years after the conclusion of World War II.

Marija Savlac soon became an American citizen with her husband and was known thereafter as Maria Schwlatsch. Together she and Filipp lived a long and happy life in southern California.

Filipp died in June 1996 at the age of ninety-five. His estate was inherited by Maria who sadly died a little over three months later. Filipp and Maria had no children born to their long union and had no known relatives to their pending estates.

Through California’s unique Community Property laws, half of Maria’s estate was set aside for Filipp’s heirs. Our European research partners eventually located Filipp’s surviving sister, a niece, and a grandniece all living in Russia.

Maria’s genealogy was traced back to Slovenia where we eventually located her only brother, Franc Seme. Unfortunately, Franc died unmarried as a pensioner in a nursing home and without children a mere fifteen days after his only sister died a world away in California.

Our search for the heirs of Filipp and Maria’s estate had to now be expanded to deal with a Slovenian decedent for whom another estate needed to be opened in California. We eventually located Maria and Franc cousins living around southern Europe and were able to bring a successful close to all three estates.