Washington DC Probate Lawyer
Probate is the court-supervised process that is required to give effect to a will and other testamentary documents. Whether probating a regular estate, a small estate or engaging in modified estate administration, the Washington DC probate lawyers at Tobin, O’Connor & Ewing work to shepherd the estate through the applicable process expeditiously while retaining as much value as possible for heirs and beneficiaries of the estate.
Executors and trustees take on an enormous burden and responsibility to carry out the wishes of a testator or settlor, often during a difficult time in the life of the estate administrator. Legal advice and assistance can help ease your mind and help you accomplish your goals with the minimum of time, effort and difficulty. In some cases, legal help is absolutely essential to resolve a complicated matter regarding the settlement of a trust or estate. Our attorneys have the knowledge and experience to deal effectively with any situation which arises.
It is not uncommon for persons left out of an estate to feel they were wrongly or mistakenly excluded. Others attack a will or trust knowing they could get more through intestacy laws. Still other have complaints regarding the way a trustee or estate executor is performing his or her duties. Our skilled and experienced litigators are prepared to handle any contested matter that may arise in the course of probate or estate administration. We fight to protect our clients’ rights and promote their interests in Maryland and Washington DC courts as needed.
Our lawyers assist the estate’s executor or personal representative in the wide variety of tasks imposed on them as the administrator of the estate, including taking possession of property and marshalling assets, preparing an inventory and information report, conducting an accounting, paying debts and taxes, managing or selling property, disputing or settling claims, and distributing assets in accordance with the will.
Trustees are tasked with the duty of managing property, investing or selling to maximize the benefit to trust beneficiaries, and to distribute trust property in accordance with the terms of the trust. As experienced real estate attorneys, our firm is well-equipped to provide advice and assistance in the settlement of estates and distribution of trust property.
Probate and Estate Litigation
Wills and trusts are legal documents, and when questions arise as to their interpretation or enforceability, these issues must at times be resolved through litigation. The experienced litigators at Tobin, O’Connor & Ewing provide strong, effective advocacy in the full range of probate and estate litigation, including the following illustrative matters:
- Will challenges and contests – Claims that the testator lacked capacity to make a will, or that the will was the product of duress, fraud or mistake; Proving a will when there is more than one will in existence; Resolving disputes involving older wills which have been amended or revoked; Dealing with objections raised by omitted or pretermitted heirs
- Trust litigation – Claims that the trustee violated fiduciary duties of loyalty, impartiality, or prudent investment; Claims of mismanagement, conflicts of interest, or self-dealing; Issues regarding investments, accountings, and settlement; Challenges to the validity of a trust
- Issues where the personal representative is also an heir or beneficiary
- Litigation involving property managers, brokers or insurance agents
- Inter-family disputes – Resolving disputes among children from a first marriage and the spouse or children of a second marriage; Resolving objections raised by a disinherited child or heir who received a smaller share than others in same class
Comprehensive Washington DC Probate Assistance
For help regarding any probate, trust or estate administration matter, including probate litigation, contact Tobin, O’Connor & Ewing at 202-362-5900 for practical advice and effective representation from a team of qualified and experienced Washington DC probate lawyers.