California Trust and Estate Litigation Attorney Located in San Mateo
A well-conceived estate plan can help you prepare for the future, provide for your loved ones, and preserve your legacy. Nonetheless, even the most carefully thought-out plan may not be able to withstand legal scrutiny. Whether the distribution plan of a will or a trust is challenged, the testator’s capacity is in doubt, or a fiduciary is accused of misconduct, it is crucial to have the advice and guidance of an experienced trust and estate litigation attorney.
While we prefer to reach negotiated solutions to estate-related disputes, our trial attorneys are fully prepared to litigate any matter.
Loew Law Group, PLC, conveniently located in San Mateo, provides comprehensive estate planning services to clients throughout Northern California and beyond. Well-versed in applicable trust and estate laws, our legal team has a proven history of achieving successful outcomes inside and outside of the courtroom. We leverage our knowledge and experience to protect the rights of fiduciaries and beneficiaries. While we prefer to reach negotiated solutions to estate-related disputes, our trial attorneys are fully prepared to litigate any matter.
Additionally, as estate planners, we routinely draw up a wide variety of estate planning documents designed to minimize the risk of trust and estate litigation. Finally, our trust and estate attorneys also provide guidance on the trust administration and probate procedures in California. When you become our client, you can trust us to always put your best interests first.
Common Trust and Estate Disputes
Trust and estate litigation may be necessary to resolve all types of disputes. At times, the beneficiaries may disagree over an intended inheritance or the validity of the will may be questioned. Today, as our society ages, more challenges are being raised over the capacity of testators, while trustees and fiduciaries often face allegations of misconduct, such as undue influence or elder fraud.
At Loew Law Group, we have extensive experience handling a wide range of estate-related disputes, including:
- Will contests
- Trust validity
- Breach of fiduciary duty
- Beneficiary disputes
- Contested heirship
- Fraud, coercion, incapacity, undue influence
- Contested powers of attorney
- Contested trust accountings
- Modifications of wills and trusts
- Fraudulent transfers
- Recovery of assets
As seasoned trial attorneys, we routinely represent our clients in the California probate courts, but also leverage our negotiating skills to reach out of court settlements. Regardless of the forum -- litigation, arbitration or mediation -- our reliable trust and estate litigation attorneys will fight to protect your rights.
Premier Estate Planning Services Throughout California
As estate planners and trust administration advisors, we tailor our advice to suit each client’s unique needs and work to help them achieve their wealth transfer objectives. Whether you can benefit from a trust-based estate plan or only require a straightforward will, our objective insights will enable you to make the best decisions about your future.
A will is the most basic estate planning tool, establishing how your property will be managed and distributed after your death. In addition, a will is the only mechanism for naming guardians for minor children. One of the drawbacks of a will is that it must go through the probate process, which can be lengthy and expensive depending on the size of the estate. For this reason, we often recommend that our clients consider establishing trusts.
There are two basic types of trusts -- revocable living trusts and irrevocable trusts:
Revocable Living Trust
A living trust is one that allows the person making the trust (the grantor) to continue managing the trust assets during his or her lifetime. A successor trustee is designated to carry out the terms of the trust and distribute the assets to beneficiaries upon the grantor’s death. The benefits of a living trust include probate avoidance and minimization of estate tax consequences.
This type of trust cannot be altered or modified during the grantor’s lifetime. There are a variety of irrevocable trusts that can achieve objectives such as providing for a loved one with special needs, long-term care planning (e.g., Medi-Cal trusts), charitable giving, estate tax avoidance, and asset protection.
Besides wills and trusts, there are other fundamental components of a comprehensive estate plan, such as durable powers of attorney, advance medical directives, living wills, guardianships, and business succession planning. By working with Loew Law Group, you can establish an estate plan that protects your interests and helps to achieve all of your financial goals.
Trust Administration Attorney
In a trust-based estate plan, a successor trustee is named to administer the estate after the death of one or both grantors. The legally mandated trust administration phase is designed to honor and fulfill the terms of the trust. At Loew Law Group, we advise trustees on their various duties such as:
- Inventorying and appraising trust property
- Transferring property into the trust
- Obtaining tax ID numbers
- Filing estate tax returns
- Trust accounting
- Distributing the assets to the beneficiaries
As trust administration attorneys, we make sure that trustees fulfill their fiduciary obligations according to the highest ethical standards and also work to protect the rights of beneficiaries.
California Probate and Estate Administration
Probate is a court-supervised legal proceeding in which a personal representative or executor is responsible for managing and distributing the assets of a will-based estate. Because a personal representative is considered a fiduciary, he or she must act in the best interests of the beneficiaries and may be held liable for any mistakes or misconduct. If a person dies without a will in place, a close relative or person with an interest in the estate must ask the court to be appointed the estate administrator. At Loew Law Group, we help executors and administrators navigate probate and estate administration proceedings, respectively, while making sure the rights of beneficiaries are protected.
Elder Abuse Litigation
Elder financial abuse and fraud is a growing problem in Northern California, a civil and criminal offense that occurs when a person or entity takes an elderly person’s property for a wrongful use or with the intent to defraud. Elder fraud is typically committed by people who are close to the victim, such as relatives, companions, financial advisors, and caretakers. Elders who live alone, suffer from cognitive impairments or need help with activities of daily living, are particularly vulnerable. If you or a loved one has been victimized by elder fraud, you have powerful legal recourse under California law to file a lawsuit to recover damages. Our elder abuse litigation attorneys will see to it that you receive just compensation for any financial losses, as well as the emotional harm you have endured.
The Informed Choice in Trust and Estate Litigation
At Loew Law Group, we are committed to helping our clients achieve their estate planning objectives as well as protecting the rights of beneficiaries and fiduciaries. Whether you need assistance drawing up a will or a trust, have been named as the personal representative of a loved one’s estate, or were denied an inheritance to which you may have been entitled, our trust and estate attorneys can help. When you work with us, you will have peace of mind knowing that your rights will be protected. Please contact our office today to speak with our capable trust and estate litigation attorneys.
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San Mateo, CA 94402