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May law firm that represented now-deceased spouses in preparing their wills and trusts represent trustees against wife’s personal representative?

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

Rulings on motions to disqualify opposing counsel have in recent months and years regularly found their way into the appellate courts. Some of these reviews have been by way of appeal as appealable injunctive orders. Others have taken the petition for writ of mandate route. The latter route was taken in Fiduciary Trust International of […]

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Does laches bar beneficiary’s action filed after settlor’s death contesting capacity to amend trust when issue known long before death?

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

In Drake v. Pinkham (published 6/21/13) 2013 DJDAR 8028, appellant and respondent were the surviving daughters of mother, the settlor of a revocable trust. Their father and mother had a living trust that provided upon one’s death there would be a split into a survivor’s trust to support the survivor, and a family trust that […]

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Amendments to revocable trust must follow procedure specified in trust instrument to exclusion of statutory method

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

Dissents appear in published opinions of the California Court of Appeal, Fifth Appellate District about as frequently as meteors crash to Earth. King v. Lynch (filed April 10. 2012) 2012 DJDAR 4516) is such a cosmic event. The court majority affirmed the trial court’s invalidating amendments to a trust, even though those amendments comply with […]

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Interested Beneficiary May Act As Personal Representative of Estate in Will Contest Under California Probate Code

Posted by Steven Vartabedian on

Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog (December 30, 2010) quotes Voltaire concerning the advantages animals have over humans; one advantage is “no one starts lawsuits over wills.” In Estate of Bartsch ( filed March 22, 2011) 2011DJDAR 4140, Norman Bartsch Herterich claimed he was the decedent’s only son and sole heir to the entire estate […]

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