Our estate planning attorneys handle a broad range of estate planning needs, from basic wills and trusts to sophisticated tax planning for very large estates. We also advise clients regarding succession planning for closely-held family businesses and major assets such as ranches and mineral-producing properties.
We advise families in the probate process after the loss of a loved one. This includes helping clients through the probate court system, working with accountants and appraisers to address post-death tax planning, estate settlement and the transfer of assets.
Our estate planning attorneys also work with clients to meet their charitable goals by forming foundations and charitable trusts, as well as other gifting techniques.
Every estate plan is tailored to meet our client’s unique goals and desires. An effective estate plan may include living trusts, family limited partnerships, generation-skipping tax planning, education and life insurance trusts, and charitable planning.
We have significant experience in succession planning for closely-held family businesses. In this area, we help clients develop a plan to transition a business to a younger generation, taking into consideration the family dynamics, the goals of family members and the management needs of the business. This effort often includes preparing buy-sell agreements to help keep a business within a family and to allow children who wish to operate a family business to buy the interest of siblings who want to pursue other interests. A succession plan also may include gifting strategies to transfer an ownership interest to children and tax planning to address potential estate tax liability.
Our estate planners, in conjunction with our litigators, represent executors and beneficiaries in fiduciary litigation and will contests. Disputes between family members can be emotionally charged, requiring special attention to explain and navigate the complex legal process to a successful conclusion. Our approach is to work with disputing family members whenever possible to avoid litigation.