Certified Specialists in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law
40 years of combined estate planning experience developing the technical skills and experiential knowledge that few estate planners possess.
Tracy J. Roberts
Estate planning is generally meant to achieve three things:
- identify goals for who will take your assets after your death
- create a set of documents meant to carry out those objectives
- keep the court out of the process both after your death and during any period of incapacity that you suffer.
Wealth Transfer Planning
Wealth transfer planning incorporates estate tax planning into your estate planning. If you are single and the total value of your assets exceeds $5 million or married with more than $10 million in assets, then with proper wealth transfer planning, you can greatly reduce the impact of the 40% federal estate tax.
Trust & Probate Administration
No matter how good your estate plan is, there will be a need for legal advice when a person dies. If your primary estate planning document is a will, then the legal advice will focus on California’s probate procedure. If your primary estate planning document is a trust, then the legal advice will focus on the rights, duties, and obligations of your successor trustee.
Litigation & Court Work
Even thoughtful and carefully made estate plans can go wrong. Beneficiaries and trustees can come to loggerheads. An unexpected situation can arise that raises questions about the terms of your plan. A trustee might make a truly bad decision, become incapacitated or simply fail to act. California probate courts are uniquely empowered to deal with these issues but they operate under rules very different from those in a typical superior court.