California Estate Planning
The focus of our Firm's Tax and Estate Planning Practice Group is to advise clients regarding basic principles of the complex federal estate tax laws, to achieve their dispositive intent with minimum estate, gift and property tax consequences.
Overall estate planning usually begins with the creation of a revocable family trust, wills, and durable powers of attorney for health care and financial management. Depending upon the client's need, we often establish other business entities and/or prepare insurance, charitable and other irrevocable trusts.
Clients are counseled on the appropriate use of various available techniques, such as living trusts utilizing the unlimited marital deduction through the use of "Q-TIP" trusts and unified credit trusts, minimizing the adverse effects of the generation-skipping tax, reducing the taxable estate through lifetime gifts, the establishment of life insurance trusts, residence "GRIT's" and other irrevocable trusts, family limited partnerships and other property transfers and "asset protection" mechanisms. The firm coordinates with the client's financial and insurance advisors to analyze insurance needs, and the form in which the insurance is or should be held.
Related to estate planning is our probate practice, which assists clients in dealing with the various property and tax problems that occur upon death, whether or not the deceased left a will. We help the survivors deal with the probate court when necessary and to avoid its jurisdiction when appropriate.
This involvement encompasses obtaining court approval of complex sale transactions, preparing and participating in audits of estate tax returns and resolution of will contests and other disputes involving the estate. Our Los Angeles estate planning law firm also represents clients in other matters under the probate court's jurisdiction, including conservatorship and guardianship proceedings and continuing court supervision of certain trusts.