One of the primary purposes of a trust is to provide the organized distribution of property from one generation to the next. A trust lets you decide now which belongings you want to be given to whom. As with any other legal proceeding, there may be issues with a trust that will require trust litigation. When that happens, you need an estate planning attorney experienced in litigation to help you through this process.
At the Schomer Law Group, we offer one of the most experienced and effective trust and probate litigation practice groups in the State of California. Providing our clients with a comprehensive team of trust, probate, and estate litigation professionals, we are ready to help our clients to develop litigation strategies to most effectively help our clients resolve their legal issues. We are skilled at handling a wide variety of legal matters, as we have dedicated a significant portion of our practice to these types of litigation matters.
Basic reasons trust litigation may be required
If it turns out that the person who created the trust may have lacked the legal capacity to do so, there may be a need for litigation to determine whether the trust is actually valid. The same is true if there are questions as to whether was coerced into creating the trust or including certain provisions in the trust. If there was undue influence or persuasion that may have inhibited the maker’s free will, then litigation may be necessary.
Schomer Law is a Los Angeles law firm with extensive experience with trust, probate and estate litigation matters. We provide advice and assistance with a wide variety of situations in which a trustee may find himself in court on behalf of a trust or estate. To learn more about trust litigation, contact our Los Angeles trust lawyers today. We can provide a personalized consultation and can offer answers to questions you may have including:
- Compelling Trustees or Executors to Account
- Proceeding to Surcharge Trustees or Executors
- Removal of Trustees or Executors
- Obtaining Trust or Will information
- Prohibited Transferee Care Custodians
Common Reasons for Contested Wills
While a family is grieving the loss of a loved one, the last thing they want is to fight over the person’s possessions. Yet, will contests are quite common and in some situations they are inevitable. The good news is, there are certain strategies you can use to avoid dealing with contested wills. First, you should be familiar with some of the common reasons people contest a will.
There are typically four reasons most people seek to challenge the validity of a will:
- the will was not signed properly,
- there is a question about testamentary capacity,
- there is a suspicion of undue influence in executing the will, and
- the testator was fraudulently induced into creating the will or including certain provisions.
Each of these grounds can be difficult to prove. Contesting a will can also be a very expensive court process, yet that fact does not discourage everyone.
What estate administration involves
When someone passes away, the property which makes up that person’s estate will be distributed to the heirs and beneficiaries. In many cases, in order for the property to be properly distributed, the estate needs to go through the probate process. Probate requires many steps, including proving the existence of the will, if there is one; identifying the property and creating an inventory of that property; paying debts, funeral expenses, and taxes; and then distributing the remaining property to the proper heirs and beneficiaries.
How necessary is it to hire a probate attorney?
In order to decide whether you actually need a probate attorney, there are several questions you need to ask. If your answer to the majority of these questions is “yes,” then you will most likely need the advice and expertise of a probate attorney. These questions can help determine how problematic the process might be and the potential for additional issues.
Getting Help from a Los Angeles Trust, Probate and Estate Litigation Firm
Schomer Law has substantial experience administering complicated trusts and estates in California. When legal disputes arise in trust or estate administration that will likely result in litigation, we are here to help. Trust, probate and estate litigation matters usually become antagonistic in nature, especially because of the family connection. Sorrow over the recent loss of a loved one often causes tension among relatives and that grief can lead to misplaced anger and eventually a legal dispute. In fact, a great number of probate, trust or estate disputes are, in reality, the result of family issues as much as they are disputes over money or estate property.
Trust and Probate Litigation Verdicts and Settlements
In 2012, Schomer Law was successful in defeating a challenge to a will by overcoming evidentiary presumptions of a lost will and other unfavorable evidentiary presumptions. The lost will was upheld and admitted to probate, allowing our client to be appointed as executor of the estate in question.
In 2011, after a seven-day trial, Schomer Law successfully obtained the appointment of a private professional conservator as well as an order confirming the validity of various actions by that conservator including fixation of conservatee’s residence and medical and care decisions made for conservatee’s benefit. (In re: Conservatorship of Jean Tanaka).
In 2011, Schomer Law successfully defended elder abuse and undue influence claims by negotiating a resolution of the dispute for a fraction of plaintiff’s demand. (Klausner vs. Klausner).
Check out our many other favorable verdicts and settlements. Schomer Law provides invaluable assistance with all of your legal issues related to trusts, probate and estate litigation. Contact our Los Angeles probate, estate, and trust lawyers today to learn about the personalized legal services we can offer to you.