- In This Issue -

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

Jana Gordon Garrotto, Law Offices of Garrotto & Garrotto

Jacqueline M. Real-Salas, Law Offices of Jacqueline M. Real-Salas, jackie@realsalaslaw.com

Stefanie S. Cutler, Bloom & Ruttenberg

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

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Volume 8, Number 1 • February 2013 • Archive of Past Issues
Visit the Trusts & Estates Section Web Page

Coming Events

February 20: Brown Bag, "Preventing and Resolving Disputes Between Aging Parents and Their Family"

This program will examine how to deal with health, competency and financial concerns of the elderly, while maximizing the benefits of mediation. Myer Sankary, Esq., CMCT, mediator specializing in Probate and Estates with ADR Services will lead a panel consisting of Caroline Vincent, Esq., Mediator/Arbitrator ADR Services, Inc and Mitch Karasov, who specializes in a holistic approach to Elder Law and Elder Care Planning.

Time 12:00 pm
Location: Stanley Mosk Special Events Center -Room 222, 2nd floor (**Please note that food & beverages are not permitted in the SEC**)
111 North Hill Street
Los Angeles CA 90012-3014

Save the Dates!!

March 21, Lunch Program: The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 at Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels. Speakers are Carol A. Johnston, Partner, Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP and Nancy B. Reimann, Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP.

April 4, New Admittees Reception at the Biltmore Hotel

April 2013, Handling Limited Conservatorships for Developmentally Disabled Adults, Lancaster (Date TBA)

May 11, at the Sheraton Delfina Santa Monica: the Annual Mandatory/Refresher PVP Training Program. Speakers and topics TBA

June 3, Tentative date for Probate Court Reception

June 20, Tentative date for Lunch Program: A View from the Bench, 2013, Probate Department, Los Angeles Superior Court

(More details to come)

Special Announcements

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (the 2012 Tax Act) was signed into law by the President on January 2, 2013. The 2012 Tax Act makes several revisions that are of importance to the trusts and estates community, namely:

• The unification of the federal and gift transfer tax exemptions was made permanent and will remain at $5 million per person, adjusted annually for inflation. (The amount for 2013 is $5,250,000);

• The generation skipping transfer tax exemption will also remain at $5 million per person, adjusted annually for inflation;

• The maximum federal estate, gift and generation skipping transfer tax rate was increased from 35% to 40%;

• The generation skipping transfer tax deemed allocation and retroactive allocation provisions were extended.

• "Portability" between spouses was made permanent. Please refer to the 2012 Act for details.

The full text can be found here

In Memoriam

It is with great sadness that we inform you that Dianne Gardapassed away on 12-12-12 after a four-month battle with severe illness. She was a Probate Referee in Compton, Norwalk, Long Beach, and Torrance since 1990. Our condolences go to her family, friends and colleagues.

A Compendium of Recent Cases

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

Trusts and Estates
Probate Code Sec. 21351(a), exempting a donative transfer made to a relative of the person who drafted the instrument from presumptive disqualification, applies where the transferor and transferee are related at the time that the transferor executes the donative instruments. It does not require that the transferor and transferee be related upon the death of the transferor.
Estate of Lira
filed December 26, 2012, publication ordered January 22, 2013, Second District, Div. Six
Cite as B231361
Full text: http://www.metnews.com/sos.cgi?0113//B231361

The limitation on the fraud exception to the parole evidence rule as set forth in Bank of America Assn. v. Pendergrass, 4 Cal. 2d 258 (1935) was ill-considered and is overruled.
Riverisland Cold Storage, Inc. v. Fresno-Madera Production Credit Association
filed January 14, 2013
Cite as 2013 S.O.S. 137
Full text: http://www.metnews.com/sos.cgi?0113//S190581

Trusts and Estates
Code of Civil Procedure Sec. 366.3, giving plaintiffs one year from a decedent’s death to file suit based on promises to make a distribution after death, takes precedence over Probate Code Sec. 9353, which gives them only 90 days, in the narrow case in which plaintiff filed a timely claim with the estate pursuant to Sec. 9353 but did not file a timely suit under Sec. 9353.
Allen v. Stoddard
filed January 9, 2013, Fourth District, Div. Three
Cite as G046460
Full text: http://www.metnews.com/sos.cgi?0113//G046460

Trusts and Estates
Domestic partnership agreements enforceable under Uniform Premarital Agreement Act and made after statutes were enacted providing domestic partners with essentially the same California state property rights as spouses are not automatically invalidated when partners marry. Where petitioner expressly waived his rights to any interest in his partner’s estate in a domestic partnership agreement and the validity of the agreement under the Uniform Premarital Agreement Act was not an issue, petitioner—who married his partner during the period in which same-sex marriage was lawful in California—could not claim any interest as a pretermitted spouse in the estate.
Estate of Wilson
filed December 13, 2012, First District, Div. Two
Cite as A133952
Full text: http://www.metnews.com/sos.cgi?1212//A133952

Trusts and Estates
Probate statutes applicable to compensation for trustees do not permit a successor trustee to be compensated where the language of a trust instrument provides that no compensation is payable.
Thorpe v. Reed
filed December 13, 2012, Sixth District
Cite as H037330
Full text http://www.metnews.com/sos.cgi?1212//H037330

Back to Top

Los Angeles County Bar Association
2012-2013 Trusts and Estates Section Newsletter

Kira S. Masteller

Amy L. McEvoy

Trudi Schindler

Immediate Past-Chair
Stuart D. Zimring

Section Administrator
Brendan Tarnay


Ronald Berman
Jill A. Brousard
Jackson Chen
Stefanie S. Cutler
Kim D. Doering
Larry S. Dushkes
Kenneth A. Feinfield
Jana L. Gordon Garrotto
Sibylle Grebe

Duncan Hromadka
Diane Y. Park
Jacqueline M. Real-Salas
Sandra (Sandy) R. Riley
Myer J. Sankary
Gabrielle A. Vidal
Caroline C. Vincent
William L. Winslow

Liaison, Barristers Section, Lauren C. Liebes
Liaison, Beverly Hills Bar Association, Trudi Schindler
Liaison, County Counsel, Susan Long, Deputy County Counsel
Liaison Public Interest, Yolande P. Erickson
Ex Officio, James R. Birnberg
Ex Officio, Susan Jabkowski
Ex Officio, Thomas H. Kenney
Ex Officio, Matthew W. McMurtrey
Ex Officio, Jonathan L. Rosenbloom