Trust beneficiary mediations are emotional. Alzheimer's, dementia, stepmothers, split families, undue influence and missing estate assets are threads that often run through the fabric of mediated estate and trust disputes. Passions run high. Feelings of betrayal mixed with grief are common to trust challengers and a protective belief of entitlement is common to the challenged.
We litigate estate and trust disputes where (1) we think that we can make a significant difference in the outcome and (2) where there is a defendant or respondent who can be made accountable and pay damages for wrongdoing. We often represent clients on a contingency fee basis in California's major urban areas, including Los Angeles, Sacramento, Alameda, Santa Clara, and San Diego counties. This active practice requires leadership. One week we'll be mediating in San Diego, another week Los Angeles, and another the San Francisco Bay Area.
We feel particularly grateful that we see some of California's best estate and trust litigation attorneys on the other side of the courtroom or mediation offices.
So here are three quick leadership lessons from our mediation experience in estate and trust litigation.
- It's the Big League. If you don't perform well you're not going to be there for long. Learn from your opposition. Learn what works - what doesn't work.
- Know your mediator's approach to resolution. There are innumerable mediator approaches to resolution. A San Francisco mediator may have an entirely different approach than a similarly experienced Oakland mediator. What works with one may be completely ineffective to another.
- It's what our client gets that counts. This lesson is learned over and over again. At the end of the day what counts is what our client gets in the mediated resolution. This is the focus - not on what the other party gets. If a case is to resolve, this needs to be the ultimate goal.
If you have an estate, trust or elder financial abuse matter that is headed to litigation and you want to discuss it with us, call us at Hackard Law (916) 313-3030. We'll be happy to talk with you about it.