Basics of Estate Planning in the Post-ATRA World at Bar Association of San Francisco on June 24

I’ll be presenting at the Bar Association of San Francisco on Wednesday, June 24, 2015 from Noon to 1:30.  The topic will be “The Basics of Estate Planning in the Post-ATRA World.”BASF Logo

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 has effectively repealed the estate tax for all but the wealthiest Americans.  I’ll be talking about ATRA and how it has changed the techniques used by estate planners.

Click here to view the BASF website and register.  This presentation is also available as a webcast.

Looking forward to seeing you in person, or online!

Basics of Estate Planning in the Post-ATRA World at Bar Association of San Francisco on June 24

Speaking at PFAC San Mateo Chapter on February 20th

Trust Administration: The First 100 days.  On February 20th from noon to 2:00 p.m. I will be speaking at at the San Mateo chapter of the Professional Fiduciary Association of California, or PFAC.  This is the chapter’s monthly meeting, and is open to chapter members.  You can find out more about PFAC San Mateo chapter here.

Here’s a quick summary of the presentation:

“For most trusts, the first 100 days is when most of the administration work is done.  The fiduciary’s work during this period can lay a foundation for a smooth and efficient administration.  This presentation will provide fiduciaries with the tools they need to get any trust administration started on the right track.”

If you are a member of San Mateo PFAC, I hope to see you on February 20th!

If you are not a member, but this presentation sounds interesting to you, contact me about presenting to your organization.

Speaking at PFAC San Mateo Chapter on February 20th

Still Plugging Away

It has been nearly one year since the launch of Hand & Little, PC, and the two most common questions I get are “how’s it going?” and “what does ‘PC’ stand for?”  I’ll answer both in order.

How It’s Going

It is going better than I could have imagined.  That is a true statement, not a self-serving “Internet Statement.”  The biggest change in adding my name to the door is that people now call me directly.  I’ve been doing this a while now, and it is very gratifying and, frankly, humbling when people call asking to talk with me.  It is an honor and a privilege to serve my clients.  There are more than 100,000 attorneys practicing in California, and every time one of them chooses me to represent them, I am conscious of the fact that it could easily have been someone else they called, and that there is nothing keeping them from doing so even after they hire me.  It is my commitment to my clients to never make them feel like they should have hired someone else.  It is truly a privilege to be of service to you.

What Does “PC” Stand For?

“PC” stands for “Professional Corporation.”  That’s it. Not very exciting.

What to look for in 2015

A big part of my commitment to my clients is in constantly improving the service I provide.  I have been practicing law for nearly 15 years, and I learn something new with every client.  It is a tremendous gift to have chosen a line of work that gives me that opportunity.

Look for more posts consisting of “long form” treatment on this blog, and more use of other platforms like Twitter for the quick sharing of a link or other tidbit that doesn’t require a lot of input from me.

And let me know what you think.  I always am flattered when I get emails and comments on my posts.

Still Plugging Away

Next Speaking Engagement: CEB Basics Conference Sep. 18 & 19

Late notice, I know, but I will be presenting at Continuing Education of the CEB Basics ConferenceBar’s Basics Conference on Thursday, September 18 and Friday September 19 on will and trust drafting.  This is the third annual conference, and it is a great way for the total novice to estate planning to get a great overview.

For details, check out the CEB website.

Hope to see you there!

Next Speaking Engagement: CEB Basics Conference Sep. 18 & 19

Probate Legislation Wiki – Everyone gets a say

California Assemblyman Mike Gatto (D-Los Angeles) has introduced a program for public commentary on proposed legislation called a “wiki-bill.”  The “wiki” concept is intended to tap into the “wisdom of crowds” to provide a solution that is greater than what could be achieved by one person or even a small group (of, say, elected legislators, for example).  Assemblyman Gatto uses the website wikispaces to bring this to the legislative process, and his first subject is probate law.

If creating laws is like watching sausage being made, creating laws by crowdsourcing is, well, even scarier. I looked at the commentary on Assemblyman Gatto’s wiki site for proposed changes to the Probate Code sections regarding disqualification of trustees and beneficiaries, and trustee’s duties to report to beneficiaries.  Several of the contributors were badly misinformed about the laws or their meaning, and did not understand how these particular statutes interact with others in the Probate Code.

Hopefully, the wisdom of the crowd will prevail, and effective legislation will be created (or current legislation will remain the same, if it is determined that it does not need to be changed).  I must admit that I am somewhat skeptical of this innovation.  Time, I suppose will eventually sort out how crowds impact the world, and Assemblyman Gatto does deserve credit for trying something new.  Whether it achieves its purpose is yet to be seen.

Probate Legislation Wiki – Everyone gets a say

Speaking Engagement: Probate Litigation Boot Camp

lecternOn Friday, September 20, I will be speaking on the tactical considerations regarding attorney’s fees in trust litigation at the East Bay Trust & Estate Lawyers (EBTEL) Probate Litigation Boot Camp in Oakland.  I’ll cover how attorneys fees factor into the decision of whether or not to litigate, methods and tools for getting the other side to pay your fees, and how to avoid paying the other side’s attorney’s fees when litigating.

The boot camp is an all-day affair, but my presentation will be about an hour.  EBTEL’s all-day boot camps are a great learning experience for attorneys and fiduciaries, and EBTEL does a great job of getting top-notch speakers for these events.  I’m honored to be a part of this year’s camp.

If you are a member of EBTEL, I hope to see you there!  For details, check out EBTEL’s website http://www.ebtel.org/

Speaking Engagement: Probate Litigation Boot Camp