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Trust & Estate litigation attorneys serving all of Northern California

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Since 2007:
  • 200+Trust
    Administrations
  • 400+Estate
    Plans
  • 400+Litigation
    Clients
  • 100+Securities
    Cases
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We Believe in Honesty, Hard Work, and the Lessons of our Experience

Barr & Young represents trustees, beneficiaries, and heirs in disputed estate and trust litigation throughout all of Northern California, including Danville, Walnut Creek, San Francisco, Pleasant Hill, Livermore, Pleasanton, Richmond, Berkeley and Oakland. For more than 20 years, our attorneys have tried, litigated, mediated, and settled cases involving every type of dispute concerning:

Fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, compelling trustees to account, trust and will contests, contested conservatorships, elder abuse, elder abuse restraining orders, securities and regulatory litigation.

We grew up and went to school in Northern California and have chosen to raise our families here. As your friends and neighbors we value your confidence in our integrity and competence above all else.
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Elder Abuse

Elder abuse is the financial abuse, physical abuse, isolation, or neglect of an elder or dependent adult. (A dependent adult is a person aged 18-64 with a mental or physical disability.) It is not uncommon for the victim of elder abuse to be reluctant to talk about the abuse because they are ashamed of being victimized or they don’t want to report a child to the police (Elder abuse is most often committed by a child against a parent.) Elder abuse is both a civil offense and a crime under California Penal Code Section 368.

Many elder abuse cases begin with a child or friend reporting to Adult Protective Services (APS). Each county in California has an APS office staffed with social workers trained to investigate suspected elder abuse. Sometimes APS reports abuse to law enforcement or the Public Guardian; however, our experience has been that APS rarely reports suspected financial elder abuse to law enforcement. In one instance, we sent the Sacramento Police Department a report by a Forensic Document Examiner (a handwriting expert) that identified 44 separate forged checks totaling over $600,000 from the checking accounts of victims aged 92 and 110. They did not prosecute the case.

Nevertheless, if you suspect elder abuse, report it to APS and the police, and hire an elder abuse attorney.

We have handled cases involving abuse by children, caregivers, and con men. Sometimes we obtain Elder Abuse Restraining Orders against the abuser, which order the abuser to stay away from the victim and not contact him or her by telephone, text, email, or mail. Although we tell clients not to expect it, the court can award attorneys’ fees or punitive damages in some cases.

Elder abuse cases can be extremely emotionally charged and very expensive. In addition, collecting on a judgement against a financial elder abuser can be as difficult as the underlying elder abuse case.

If your parent or loved one is being abused, our elder abuse attorneys can help.

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Securities Litigation

Barr & Young represents Investors, Registered Investment Advisors, FINRA members, and Broker-Dealers in all aspects of securities litigation, arbitration, and investigations. We also represent financial professionals in trade secret, unfair competition, and raiding cases related to employees leaving their employer to join a competitor.

We have more than a quarter-century of experience handling fraud, suitability, breach of fiduciary duty, churning, and portfolio mismanagement claims. Gordon Young has tried or arbitrated over 75 cases to conclusion, and handled hundreds of cases involving stocks, bonds, mutual funds, managed accounts, preferred stocks, options, limited partnerships, structured products, private placements, hedge funds, and highly margined accounts.

Our familiarity with the securities industry uniquely positions us to represent frustrated investors or wrongfully accused investment professionals. The securities industry is heavily regulated, and with each passing market downturn, more scrutiny is directed at the professionals that advise investors. We defend licensed professionals in regulatory investigations and litigation brought by FINRA, the California Office of Business Oversight, and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Our securities industry experience extends to trade secret, employee raiding, and unfair competition lawsuits and arbitrations. We have represented securities employers who have lost employees, and financial executives who have been the target of litigation by their former employers. Our lawyers are familiar with the interplay of the Broker Protocol, the federal Defend Trade Secrets Act, and California’s Uniform Trade Secrets Act in connection with competitive hiring suits in the securities industry.

Protect your investment portfolio, professional license and reputation, book of business, and bottom line by hiring Barr & Young today.

Our Practice Areas
If your case involves a conflict with a trustee or executor, a disputed will or trust, the abuse of an elder, or a dishonest or unresponsive trustee; if you are a trustee administering a trust or struggling with uncooperative, suspicious, or hostile beneficiaries; if your parent or loved one is vulnerable and needs protection; if you need an original estate plan, or a review of an existing plan; if you’ve been placed in unsuitable investments, are the victim of investment fraud by an investment advisor or stockbroker; or if you’re a financial professional accused of wrongdoing by investors or regulators—our attorneys can help.
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Trust Litigation
Elder Abuse
Estate Planning
Trust Administration
Will Contests
Conservatorships
Securities Litigation
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We Are Ready To Help6 Lawyers with 60+ Years of Combined Experience
All our Attorneys are Northern California Super Lawyers or Rising Stars

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Loren Barr

Partner
Loren Barr specializes in estate and trust litigation, estate planning, and trust and estate administration.
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Gordon Young is a 25-year litigator who practices in securities, financial, and trust & estate...
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Heidi Imsand

ESTATE PLANNING & TRUST ADMINISTRATION
Heidi’s focus is Estates & Trusts, serving clients from Contra Costa, Alameda, Santa Clara, San...
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Donald J. Slater

TRUST & ESTATE LITIGATION
Donald’s focus is Trust & Estate Litigation, serving clients from Contra Costa, Alameda, Santa Clara,...
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David Monsour

SECURITIES LITIGATION & TRUST AND ESTATE LITIGATION
David practices in the areas of Securities Litigation and Trust and Estate Litigation.
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Graham D. Douds

TRUST & ESTATE LITIGATION
Graham’s focus is Trust & Estate Litigation, serving clients from Contra Costa, Alameda, Santa Clara,...
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Why Should You Choose Barr & Young Attorneys?
  • In his 25-year career, Gordon Young has tried or arbitrated over 75 cases to conclusion.
  • In his 22nd year of practice, Loren Barr has been certified by the State Bar of California as a Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust & Probate Law since 2004.
  • We will return your initial call or email inquiry within one hour.*
  • We have a team of six attorneys and one paralegal ready to respond immediately.
  • Gordon Young has been a Northern California Super Lawyer every year since 2007, and Loren Barr every year since 2008.
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How Can Our Probate Attorneys Help You?

Probate is a court supervised process of administering a decedent’s estate after they die. Although probate has become less common with the widespread use of living trusts (a probate is generally unnecessary if the decedent had a living trust), when a probate is necessary, our probate attorneys are experienced and knowledgeable about all aspects of the probate process.

A probate proceeding should be filed in the county where the decedent resided at his or her death. Thus, if the decedent lived in Danville or Walnut Creek at his or her death, the probate would be filed in Contra Costa County, while a probate for a decedent who lived in San Francisco would be filed in San Francisco County.

Probate begins with a pleading called a Petition for Probate and Appointment of a Probate Personal Representative. In this pleading the petitioner (usually the person nominated as the executor in the will, asks the court to appoint them as the personal representative of the estate. The petitioner must send a copy of the petition to all the people named in the will and all the decedent’s heirs. If there are no objections from the beneficiaries, the person nominated by the decedent is usually appointed as executor at the first hearing. Once the order appointing the executor is signed, the order is filed with the clerk and the clerk issues the executor documents called “Letters of Administration.” These court-certified documents grant the executor the power to act. Unless the will states that a bond is not required, the executor must obtain a bond and file it with the clerk before letters are issued.

Our probate attorneys are ready to guide you through this process with patience and expertise.

Once letters have issued, the executor may marshal the assets, pay creditors claims, sell real estate, publish a notice to creditors to cut off claims by unknown creditors, have property appraised, and file an inventory and appraisal. The inventory an appraisal is an important step because it identifies all the assets in the estate and the value of each asset. Once the inventory and appraisal is approved, the executor can move to the final stage, which is a petition for approval and final discharge. In this pleading, the executor confirms that all creditors have been paid, no taxes are due, and the estate can be closed. If there are no objections, the petition will typically be approved.

Probate can be a tedious and frustrating process, and it is usually avoided by using a living trust. In the best circumstances, a probate takes about nine months. The fees to the attorney and the executor are determined on a graduated scale listed in Probate Code 10800-10810. Probate attorneys often generalize that the probate fees are about 3% each for the executor and the attorney. Our probate attorneys are ready to guide you through this process with patience and expertise.

Our probate attorneys are experienced and knowledgeable about all aspects of the probate process.

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Our Blog

January 14, 2019
The Wells Process in Securities Enforcement Actions
At the conclusion of an enforcement investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and...
October 29, 2018
Four Things To Know About Testifying
You’ve just been served with a subpoena to testify at a deposition. A regulator has...
October 10, 2018
Probate Code 16004.5: Release of Trustee’s Liability
The last steps in a trust administration include: Filing the final income tax return Obtaining an estate...