- In This Issue -

The Trusts & Estates Bulletin is published monthly by the Trusts & Estates Section, coeditors:

Amy L. McEvoy, Sheppard Mullin, AMcEvoy@sheppardmullin.com

Nelson J. Handy, Fiduciary Law Services, Inc., nelson@fidls.com

Diane Young Park, Weinstock Manion Reisman Shore & Neumann, dpark@weinstocklaw.com

Coming Events

How to Get Your Accountings RFA'd The First Time

How do you start to prepare for the accounting at the inception of the proceeding? What do the probate attorneys look for and what are the most frequent notes causing delays in approval? How do you prepare for the hearing on the account and report?

Hon. Reva G. Goetz, Los Angeles Superior Court
Susan Jabkowski, Hinojosa & Wallet
Sandra (Sandy) R. Riley, LA Superior Court

Date: May 12, 2011
Location: Omni Los Angeles Hotel

Click here to register for this event

A View From the Bench 2011: Probate Department, Los Angeles Superior Court

Judges Mitchell L. Beckloff, Marvin M. Lager, Reva G. Goetz, and Michael L. Levanas will discuss recent developments in the Probate Department of the Los Angeles Superior Court and the Arthur K. Marshall Award will be presented.

Hon. Mitchell L. Beckloff, Supervising Judge of the Probate Departments, Los Angeles Superior Court
Hon. Reva G. Goetz, Los Angeles Superior Court
Hon. Marvin M. Lager, Los Angeles Superior Court
Hon. Michael I. Levanas, Los Angeles Superior Court

Date: June 30, 2011
Location: Omni Los Angeles Hotel

Click here to register for this event

Special Announcements

Law Professors Needed: Trusts and Estates, Business Organizations, Contracts, Torts

Glendale University College of Law, founded in 1967 and accredited by the State Bar, is seeking adjunct faculty (part-time) for evening programs. Attorneys with minimum five years relevant experience who reside/work within reasonable proximity to Glendale preferred. Subjects require significant preparation and time commitment. Each course meets one night per week, from 6:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m. Courses vary in length from one to three quarters. Exceptional opportunity to develop skills in the field of legal education and enhance mastery of subject matter; teaching experience not required. Please express interest in subjects beyond those listed; proposals for electives invited. Resumes/cover letters accepted only by e-mail to faculty@glendalelaw.edu Attn: Faculty Hiring Committee. All e-mails acknowledged upon receipt. No phone calls or faxes.

A Compendium of Recent Cases

Cases appear in chronological order, with the oldest case appearing first.

Trusts and Estates
Where petition to probate will had the practical effect of challenging an earlier trust, filing of such petition was an "action to contest the trust" within the meaning of Probate Code Sec. 16061, which requires that such an action be brought within 120 days following service of notice by the trustee. Will was dictated and signed by decedent and handwritten by another person--but was defective in form because it contained no witnesses' signatures. Trial court did not err in admitting it to probate under Sec. 6110(c)(2) based on clear and convincing evidence of decedent's intent in the form of testimony by two witnesses who saw him sign it. Public policy in favor of validating wills that reflect decedents' intent supports retroactive application of Sec. 6110(c)(2) to wills executed before its effective date. Lack of testamentary language, use of the word will, or reference to death did not preclude finding that document was intended by decedent to be his will.
    Estate of Stoker - filed March 3, 2011, Second District, Div. Six
    Cite as 2011 S.O.S. 1274
    Full text

Trusts and Estates
In action brought on behalf of conservatee against attorney and family members who had allegedly converted conservatee's property to their own benefit, trial court properly instructed jury that conservatee's SSI payments--evidence of which was admitted in support of defendants' claim that they did not distribute proceeds of sale of property because they feared conservatee would lose those benefits--were collateral source benefits that could not be used to offset any damages jury might award.
    Conservatorship of the Estate of McQueen - filed March 14, 2011, First
    District, Div. Four
    Cite as 2011 S.O.S. 1361
    Full text

Trusts and Estates
Son claiming a right to inherit his father's estate as an omitted heir had standing to challenge probate court's interim award of attorneys' fees and costs to executor because such an award would place son at a financial disadvantage by diminishing the estate should son prevail in the will contest. Personal representatives or executors who are also beneficiaries are not incapable of participating "as a party to assist the court" under Probate Code Sec. 11704(b).
    Estate of Bartsch - filed March 22, 2011, First District, Div. One
    Cite as A126925
    Full text

Los Angeles County Bar Association
2010-11 Trusts and Estates Section Newsletter
Amy L. McEvoy, Co-Editor,  Diane Young Park, Co-Editor,   Nelson J. Handy, Co-Editor

Nelson J. Handy

Stuart D. Zimring

Kira S. Masteller

Kira S. Masteller

Immediate Past-Chair
Jonathan L. Rosenbloom

Section Administrator
Erica Leon


Michael A. Abraham
Ronald Berman
Jackson Chen
Kenneth A. Feinfield
Sibylle Grebe
Susan Jabkowski
Jane E. Kwon
Amy L. McEvoy
Diane Young Park

Nicole M. Pearl
Jacqueline Real-Salas
Myer J. Sankary
Leigh A. Shipp
Gabrielle A. Vidal
Caroline C. Vincent
William Lane Winslow

Liaison Beverly Hills Bar Association, Trudi Sabel Schindler
Liaison Public Interest, Yolande P. Erickson
Ex Officio, Laura Conti
Ex Officio, James R. Birnberg
Ex Officio, Thomas H. Kenney
Ex Officio, Matthew W. McMurtrey
Ex Officio, Gary M. Ruttenberg