Alerts

Warning: Documents misusing the name "Kennerleys Solicitors"

12 July 2017

The SRA has been informed of emails attaching documents regarding a will, which falsely claim to be from "Kennerleys Solicitors".

What is the scam?

The SRA has been informed that an email has been sent which attaches an unsigned "limited power of attorney", and a supposed "last will and testament" dated from 2007. The documents purport to be from or prepared by "Kennerleys Solicitors". The "limited power of attorney" provides an address in Manchester.

The email seen by the SRA refers to a supposedly unclaimed inheritance and was stated to be from "Michael A McCulloch", who describes himself as the "personal attorney" of the deceased. The email invites the recipient to forward copies of personal identity documents and the signed power of attorney. The email has been sent from the email address "privatesolicitors@gmail.com".

The SRA does not authorise and regulate a solicitor called Michael A McCulloch.

The SRA does not authorise or regulate a genuine firm called "Kennerleys Solicitors" (but see below).

Any business or transactions through the email address "privatesolicitors@gmail.com" or through "Kennerleys Solicitors" is not undertaken by a solicitor's practice or an individual authorised and regulated by the SRA.

Is there a genuine firm or person?

Kennerleys was a genuine firm which was previously authorised and regulated by the SRA, and was based in Manchester. This firm closed in 1999.

What should I do?

When a firm's or individual's identity has been copied exactly (or cloned), due diligence is necessary. If you receive correspondence claiming to be from the above firm(s) or individual(s), or information of a similar nature to that described, you should conduct your own due diligence by checking the authenticity of the correspondence by contacting the law firm directly by reliable and established means. You can contact the SRA to find out if individuals or firms are regulated and authorised by the SRA and verify an individual's or firm's practising details. Other verification methods, such as checking public records (e.g. telephone directories and company records) may be required in other circumstances.