Estate & Trust Litigation

“In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes”. Benjamin Franklin

Unfortunately, losing someone can sometimes bring out the worst in people.  Maybe you’ve noticed that well-meaning, wonderful people make really odd choices after losing a family member or friend.  If you’ve lost someone you are care about and are in conflict with their spouse, a sibling, or someone else close to you over how the estate should be handled, you know how stressful and exhausting it can be.  

At Bains Law, Inc., we handle all types of trust and estate litigation, delivering adept, efficient, and compassionate representation.  Some situations where litigation may be necessary include the following: 

  • A parent dies and a child is squatting in the home
  • Family members disagree about the validity of a will or trust
  • Successor trustee is stealing money from a trust or committing wrong-doing 
  • An Executor is intentionally delaying the probate process
  • Someone took advantage of the decedent and wrongfully took their assets

Estate & Trust Litigation FAQs

What is litigation?

Simply put, litigation is a lawsuit brought before a court of law that has the jurisdiction to decide on the case for resolution when two or more parties are unable to resolve the issue without court intervention.  Typically, in trust and estate litigation, the lawsuit is before a probate judge and the issues are resolved according to the California Probate Code.  

How much does litigation cost?

For our office, all of the litigation cases we accept are charged on an hourly basis, and we do request a retainer fee. The total cost of litigation depends on different factors, such as discovery, the number of court appearances, mediation and other forms of settlement negotiations, as well as trial preparation and then the trial itself.  We work with people who need truth, advice and staunch advocates to help them resolve issues with the least amount of stress possible.  In many cases, a settlement can be negotiated that allows both parties to move forward.  In other cases, court is the only way to protect your rights and our job is to ensure your rights are protected.  Our office will strive to provide you with cost-effective solutions with the staunchest legal advocacy possible.

How long is litigation going to take?

It depends.  For estate and trust litigation, we’re sensitive to the fact that losing a person you love is emotionally draining.  It’s hard to compromise if someone feels that that they’ve been cheated from their fair share or someone unduly influenced the decedent.  Depending on the circumstances, litigation can take as little as several months or last a few years.  Our job is to fiercely advocate for your best interest at every stage of the litigation process.

Why do I need an attorney who specializes in this area of law?

No matter who you pick as your lawyer, you want an attorney who has relevant experience in probate court and has deep knowledge of the procedural technicalities of the California Probate Code.  Because litigation can be time consuming and draining, it’s best to choose a law firm you’re comfortable working with and one you believe will deliver the best outcome for you.  Kenea, as the principal attorney, is a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization.  

Am I going to win?

We wish we could tell every client that they will win the dispute.  The reality is that winning is never a guarantee.  However, we will do our best to deliver the most successful and cost-effective outcome for you.