- In This Issue -

Coming Event
Save the Dates
Recent Cases

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,

Stefanie S. Cutler, Bloom & Ruttenberg

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  An ePublication of the Los Angeles County Bar Association
Volume 8, Number 9   October 2013    Archive of Past Issues
Trusts and Estates Section Home Page

Coming Event:

Aviva K. Bobb Advanced PVP Training Symposium
Saturday, November 2


Program Information:
This annual program helps to fulfill the continuing education requirements for PVP Attorneys set forth in the LASC Local Rules and the California Rules of Court. It is also of interest to all trusts and estates practitioners, especially those handling conservatorship matters. This year, we will focus on PVP reports and pleadings, working with public agencies, and other topics not generally covered in the Spring PVP Attorney Training Program. The speakers are fiduciaries, staff of public agencies, attorneys and judicial officers who are well-regarded in their professional fields.

Hon. Mitchell L. Beckloff, Los Angeles Superior Court, Supervising Judge, Probate Departments
Wendi Brown, Los Angeles Superior Court
Frumeh Labow, Complete Probate Administration
Robin Meadow, Greines, Martin, Stein & Richland LLP
Leigh S. Muniz, City National Bank
Jonathan L. Rosenbloom, Law Offices of Jonathan L. Rosenbloom
Hon. James A. Steele, Los Angeles Superior Court
Hon. Robert Wada, Los Angeles Superior Court, Probate Department

LA Hotel Downtown (Hyatt Regency)
333 S. Figueroa St
Los Angeles, CA 90012

Room: Grand Ballroom

Registration: 8:30 a.m.
Meal/Reception: 8:30 a.m.
Program: 9:00 to 1:00

CLE+ Member $95.00
Government Attorney/Employee $95.00
Trusts and Estates Section Member $155.00
LACBA Member $185.00
All Others $220.00

3.5 hours of CLE credits, including Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law Specialization credit



Save the Date:

2013 Legislative Update
Thursday, December 12
Omni Hotel Los Angeles 251 S Olive St Los Angeles, CA 90012

Recent Cases

-Civil Procedure-
Right-to-life insurance proceeds was "in dispute," for purposes of interpleader, where insured’s death was under active investigation as a possible homicide, and beneficiary was considered a "prime" suspect at the time of the interpleader.

Beneficiary’s claim on appeal that interpleader was unnecessary was forfeited. Beneficiary did not contest insurer’s decision to interplead the funds but rather answered the original complaint without asserting any affirmative defenses. Beneficiary stipulated to the filing of a first amended complaint adding insured’s next-of-kin as a defendant. Beneficiary did not respond to the first amended complaint, simply requesting that the court release the interpleaded funds to him once insured’s next-of-kin had defaulted in the action.

Insurer did not--by opposing beneficiary’s motion to release interpleaded funds on the ground that the funds should not be distributed until he dismissed his first amended cross-complaint asserting causes of action for breach of contract and bad faith--cease to be a disinterested stakeholder and was thus not precluded from seeking an award of attorney fees and costs. Fact that plaintiff-in-interpleader was in the business of selling life insurance and thus regularly incurred legal fees in the course of business did not make fee award an abuse of discretion.
     Farmers New World Life Insurance Company v. Rees - filed August 30, 2013, Second District, Div. One
     Cite as B241099
     Full text
Claims that attorney--serving as guardian ad litem for husband in a divorce action and acting at the direction of a judge--committed negligence, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract and intentional infliction of emotional distress, resulting in financial losses and the loss of custody of the husband’s children, were barred by the litigation privilege and the doctrine of quasi-judicial immunity.
     McClintock v. West - filed September 9, 2013, Fourth District, Div. Three
     Cite as G046483
     Full text

Trusts and Estates-
Trial court erred in relying on Probate Code Sec. 6124--which creates a presumption regarding the burden of producing evidence that a will not produced after testator’s death was destroyed with the intent of cancelling it--to sustain will contest, where there was substantial evidence from which it could be inferred that testator’s wife stole the will to prevent children from testator’s premarital relationship from sharing in the estate.
     Estate of Trikha - filed September 13 2013, Fourth District, Div. Three
     Cite as G046800
     Full text

Healthcare Law-
California legislation that eliminated coverage for certain healthcare services, including adult dental, podiatry, optometry, and chiropractic services, conflicted with the Medicaid Act and was therefore invalid. Federally qualified health center and association representing such centers had a private right of action to bring a claim pursuant to 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1983 to challenge the validity of a state statute that conflicted with rights created by 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1396a(bb) by impermissibly eliminating mandatory services from coverage. Approval of state plan amendments by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services after the district court entered judgment was not entitled to judicial deference where inconsistent with Congress’ unambiguous definition of the scope of physician’s services for which plaintiffs were entitled to reimbursement.
     California Association of Rural Health Clinics v. Douglas - filed July 5, 2013, amended September 17, 2013
     Cite as 10-17574
     Full text

 -Family Law-
Juvenile court has the authority to terminate a predependency probate guardianship in response to a motion filed by counsel for the dependent minors, whether or not the social services agency that initiated the dependency proceedings so recommends, and even if the probate guardianship was established in a different county.
     In re J.D. - filed September 25, 2013, First District, Div. Four
     Cite as 2013 S.O.S. A137236
     Full text

Where one of two brothers severed a joint tenancy by deeding the property to himself and his brother as tenants in common, a "change of ownership" occurred, triggering reassessment under Proposition 13, even though the brothers continued to own the property equally.
     Benson v. Marin County Assessment Appeals Board (Mikkelsen) - filed September 26, 2013, First District, Div. One
     Cite as 2013 S.O.S. A134340
     Full text

-Social Security Law-
Where SSA never explained why it rejected SDI applicant’s facially valid excuse for a delay in her hearing request, it deprived applicant of her due process right to a meaningful opportunity to be heard and to seek reconsideration of an adverse benefits determination, requiring remand. Under Ninth Circuit precedent, applicant’s colorable claim of a due process violation falls under an exception to the rule requiring a contested hearing and a final order before the courts may review a denial of benefits.
     Dexter v. Colvin - filed September 30, 2013
     Cite as 2013 S.O.S. 12-35074
     Full text


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

Amy L. McEvoy

Trudi Schindler

William L. Winslow

Immediate Past-Chair
Kira S. Masteller

Section Administrator
Brendan Tarnay


Julia L. Birkel
Jill A. Brousard
Jackson Chen
Stefanie S. Cutler
Roseann DeRosa
Kim D. Doering
Larry S. Dushkes
Jana Gordon Garrotto

Sibylle Grebe
Duncan Hromadka
Albert F. Mikulencak
Leigh Shipp Muniz
Mary L. O'Neill
Jacqueline M. Real-Salas
Marc L. Sallus

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

Ex Officio, Stuart Zimring

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