Trust & Estate Disputes

Sometimes negotiation or litigation is needed to resolve trust and estate disputes. Trustees may breach their fiduciary duties to beneficiaries, or personal representatives may use estate assets for their own personal benefit. Washington law provides a more efficient and less costly way to resolve trust and estate disputes: the Trust and Estate Dispute Resolution Act (“TEDRA”). TEDRA provides for an initial hearing and mediation that can sometimes resolve all matters without a costly and time consuming trial. When the Court is asked to adjudicate a dispute, and sometimes when the parties agree, TEDRA gives extra flexibility in creating cost effective and tailored remedies that work for a specific situation.

We help clients resolve dispute regarding trusts and estates, including disputes involving

  • will and testamentary trust interpretation;
  • removal of personal representatives, administrators, and executors;
  • family support awards;
  • omitted spouse claims;
  • mediation, arbitration, and trial;
  • trust and estate resolution agreements;
  • spousal rights;
  • rights relating to committed intimate relationships;
  • community property issues;
  • elder abuse and inheritance rights;
  • joint owners and real estate co-tenants;
  • creditor claims against the estate;
  • will contests;
  • undue influence, fraud, and lack of capacity;
  • breach of fiduciary duties relating to powers of attorney;
  • title issues;
  • inventories and estate accountings;
  • breaches of fiduciary duty; and
  • personal representatives’ failure to provide information to beneficiaries and settle estates quickly.

Trust and estate disputes can be lengthy and costly, and with the right approach, some can be solved quickly in a cost effective manner. Choosing the right attorney can be an important first step. Our attorneys have over 15 years of experience protecting estate assets and holding trustees, personal representatives, and third parties accountable. Set up an appointment to have a Bellingham trust and probate litigation attorney review your particular situation and craft a legal strategy to protect you or get you what you are entitled to.

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