This article discusses three ways to attack the report of an Evidence Code §730 expert when the expert’s report goes beyond the scope of the expert’s §730 appointment. California probate court judges frequently appoint “730 experts” in conservatorship and trust proceedings.  A 730 expert is an expert appointed by the court under California Evidence Code…

In the midst of a trust contest or other trust-related litigation, it’s easy for trustees to forget that their duties to the contesting beneficiaries continue notwithstanding the ongoing litigation.  A trustee might assume his or her position and immediately face litigation (a demand for an accounting, an emergency conservatorship, or a challenge to the trust,…

When we represent trustees, and particularly when some aspect of the trust administration may be disputed, we often advise them to manage the beneficiaries’ expectations about when they will receive their inheritance.  Many people, having heard that living trusts avoid probate, assume that a trust administration is simple, and that the trust property somehow passes…

Although most trust, estate, and elder abuse cases eventually settle, we prepare each case as if it will go to trial.  All of the stages previously described in this series (from initial research through discovery and expert witness depositions) have the same objective — presenting the best possible case at trial. Trust and estate cases…

Preparing for trial in an estate or trust litigation case can be an intense and time consuming process for attorneys and clients.  Although preparing for trial begins the moment we are retained, the process intensifies in the last few weeks before trial as the evidence accumulated during the discovery process is marshaled and organized into…

Expert witness depositions are part of the discovery stage of litigation, but they deserve special attention due to their high cost and particular prominence in California trust and estate litigation.  While the discovery process ends with a “discovery cut-off” 30 days before trial, the expert discovery cut-off extends to 15 days before trial. Under California…

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