Trust Litigation Attorney in West Los Angeles

Whether you’re mourning a loved one or looking into creating a trust, stress should be the furthest thing from your mind. Choosing the right estate planning attorney is important because it can prevent the already-unfamiliar situation from becoming a frustrating and expensive one. Joel F. Pipes & Associates employs only the most trustworthy, knowledgeable, compassionate, and professional people. Our expert team takes a completely personalized approach to every single case. If you’re more comfortable with a house call than an in-office meeting, we’re happy to accommodate. We’re glad to do anything we can to make this tough time a little more manageable. If you’re on the hunt for a probate litigation attorney in West Los Angeles or an estate planning lawyer, you’ve found just that in our well-versed law firm.

Services

Trust Litigation

Trusts are an excellent way to protect and distribute your assets when you pass away, but what happens if there’s an issue with the trust itself? Making the decision to pursue trust litigation is never an easy one, but finding a reliable trust litigation lawyer in West Los Angeles is as simple as can be when you choose Joel F. Pipes & Associates. Trust litigation may be necessary in a number of scenarios, including:

  1. To recover trust funds that have been misappropriated by the trustee.
  2. To obtain an interpretation of an ambiguous trust term and establish the intent of the settlor.
  3. To prompt a trustee to distribute the assets of the trust and complete administration of said trust.
  4. To propose that the trust instrument was a product of undue influence, duress, or fraud.
  5. To remove a trustee and replace them with a more appropriate person.
  6. To obtain a copy of the trust documents or other withheld trust-related information, such as an accounting of trust assets, tax returns, etc.)

Ideally, trusts would all be simple to manage. However, some trusts are poorly-worded and hard to interpret. Some trustees are untrustworthy, nefarious, or hard to get along with. Legal proceedings and death can be very complicated. You might need a trust litigation lawyer for a variety of reasons.

Keeping other trustees honest, honoring your deceased loved one’s wishes, and protecting yourself in the process can be a challenge. Going to court without legal counsel and proper support from a trust litigation attorney can be scary – and it can cost you in the long run. Don’t embark on this journey by yourself – call us for a free consultation! No matter if you’re a beneficiary or a fiduciary, our legal staff will give you the representation you so richly deserve.

Probate Litigation

Probate litigation occurs when one individual brings a claim against another during the probate process, or when a dispute takes place during probate. If you need legal representation to get through the stressful and confusing probate process, reach out to Joel F. Pipes – the most personable and trustworthy probate litigation lawyer in West Los Angeles.

A probate litigation attorney is essential when you’re navigating the probate litigation process. Not only can we fight for you, but your probate litigation lawyer can work alongside you to ensure that your loved one’s wishes are upheld. Probate litigation may be necessary for a number of reasons, such as:

  • To compel the trustee to provide a copy of the trust
  • To ask the court to instruct the trustee in performing a certain task
  • To remove the trustee
  • To ask the court to instruct the trustee to account formally for information that may have been falsified or withheld
  • To reclaim property that rightfully belongs to the trust
  • To appoint a temporary trustee
  • To suspend the trustee’s powers
  • To seek damages against the trustee
  • To obtain financial information from the trustee
  • To appoint a successor trustee

Whatever your reason for pursuing probate litigation, you’ve come to the right place for a thorough and well-versed West Los Angeles probate lawyer. Reach out to schedule a free consultation, and we’ll talk to you about the process of litigating probate. You don’t have to attempt to manage all the court hearings, documents, legal jargon, assets, and difficult conversations yourself – that’s where your experienced probate litigation attorney, Joel F. Pipes & Associates, comes in.

Probate

You’ve probably heard of probate, but maybe you aren’t familiar with what it entails. Probate is the court process of changing the titles on all assets owned by the deceased individual. Some assets don’t require probate, but many do. Probate is a notoriously long, drawn-out process, and it can also be an expensive one. With help from your favorite West Los Angeles estate planning attorney, you can avoid the headache of probate altogether.

Perhaps you’ve found yourself on the other side of probate – the side where a loved one has recently passed, and they didn’t have a trust in place. If you’re looking for a local probate attorney to help you with probate administration, we’re here to help. Sometimes, needing a probate lawyer is beyond your own control. Maybe your loved one simply didn’t recognize the need for estate planning, or maybe he or she passed unexpectedly. In any event, our probate lawyers will guide you through the sensitive and confusing probate process. Your probate attorney will help you through asset distribution, the expenses of funeral planning, and everything else that comes from losing a loved one.

When you’re faced with probate, you’ll suddenly have a seemingly endless to-do list. One item you can remove now is, ”finding a probate attorney near me.” We’ll be there to help you with property appraisal; paying taxes and creditors; identifying and notifying heirs, beneficiaries, and creditors; appointing an executor; and so much more. Don’t put yourself through the stress of navigating probate by yourself. Call us now and allow us to take something off your plate during this tough season of life.

Estate Planning

At any age, estate planning is an important endeavor. Whether you’re thinking about retiring in the near future or just starting your life as an adult, you’ll enjoy the peace of mind that comes from having a solid estate plan in place for the future of your assets and family. Come to us simply to create a will, if you need help with preserving your estate, or if you just want to learn more from a local estate planning attorney. Our free consultations are an excellent place to start. Your estate plans should create a lasting legacy for your beloved family, and that’s exactly what our estate planning lawyers will help you achieve.

When you start the estate planning process, you’ll want to be sure your lawyer is brushed up on estate planning law. Not all estate planning services measure up. Joel F. Pipes has been a local estate planning attorney for more than 20 years. He and his team genuinely care about your wishes, your family, and you. He works tirelessly to personalize each estate plan to meet the individual needs of each client and to help their loved ones avoid probate. Maybe your internet search for an “estate planning attorney near me” returned us as a result, or perhaps you have a friend or family member who referred you. No matter how you found us, we’re humbled by the honor of guiding our clients through the sensitive and personal process of estate planning.

Reasons You Need a Trust

You may think you know how your loved ones will distribute and share your assets after your passing, but a trust is the only way to guarantee that your wishes are honored. Trusts have many benefits, including:

Avoiding probate
Protection in the event of a divorce
Tax Benefits
Making lifetime gifts to your children or heirs
Protection from creditors
Irrevocable Trust

Irrevocable trusts aren’t for everyone, but they do offer certain advantages. An irrevocable living trust is one that cannot be changed without the consent of the beneficiaries. Like a revocable trust, your privacy will be fully protected, probate will be circumnavigated, and you’ll be protected if you become incapacitated.

Irrevocable trusts also offer benefits that revocable trusts don’t allow for. Trustees will enjoy reduced taxation, and they’ll be protected from the creditors of the trustor. However, they don’t offer the same level of flexibility as a revocable trust. They are much more complex, and they leave you at the mercy of the trustee by forcing you to relinquish asset control. It’s important to consult a trustworthy estate planning attorney before choosing between these trust types. We’ll work with you to consider the advantages and disadvantages of each, and we’ll advise you as you make this important decision.

Revocable Trust

Because of their flexibility, revocable trusts are the most common type of trust. Often referred to as living trusts, revocable trusts can be canceled or modified at any time throughout the life of the trustor. Your West Los Angeles estate planning lawyer can walk you through the benefits of this type of trust, which include maintained control of your assets, protection in the event of incapacity, avoiding probate, and preservation of privacy. A revocable living trust is a wise choice because it typically works well in conjunction with living wills – another common and essential component in the process of estate planning.