Trusts & Estates Litigation
Trusts and estates litigation takes many forms. Disputes may arise involving an estate plan or the administration of a trust, probate, or conservatorship estate. Often, the disputes are deeply personal in nature as they may involve the death or decline of family members or loved ones. Our dedicated team of Trusts and Estates litigators understands the multi-faceted layers of complexity of these disputes and assists with a full range of trust and probate controversies.
These disputes often require specialized knowledge and expertise of the Probate Code and Probate Court procedures. Our trusts and estates litigators assist clients with elder financial abuse claims, contested conservatorships, defense and initiation of will and trust contests, interpretation disputes concerning complex estate planning documents, including, but not limited to reformation of instruments, modification or termination of trusts, disputes over ownership of assets in which an estate, trust, or conservatorship may have an interest, including, but not limited to a contract to make a will claims; accounting, financial, and tax disputes; removal or appointment of fiduciaries; fee disputes; administration issues; community property disputes; and breach of fiduciary duty claims.
Within this category of services we represent a broad spectrum of clients, including individual and corporate fiduciaries, in their capacities as trustees, personal representatives, special administrators, conservators, and guardians. We also represent beneficiaries, creditors, and other interested persons in trust, probate, conservatorship, and elder financial abuse matters.
- Successfully enforcing an oral contract by a parent to leave the parent’s estate to a child in exchange for a significant personal benefit given by the child to the parent during the parent’s lifetime.
- Recovering funds improperly transferred after the first spouse’s death by the surviving spouse from a trust created by both spouses during their joint lifetimes.
- Obtaining a judgment against a child who obtained loans against a parent’s real property assets using a power of attorney and then expended the funds received for the child’s own benefit.
Dead Men Tell No Tales and Other Issues with Contracts to Make a Will
First, what is a contract to make a will? A contract to make a will is exactly as it sounds. It is an agreement to provide for a person as part of a decedent’s will.