Litigation: Will Contests, Fiduciary Liability, Omitted Heirs and Contested Guardianships and Conservatorships
Estate planning is like preventative care.
In the medical field, we accept that preventative care is important. Estate planning is like preventative care. We know we should do it; but sometimes we just do not get it done. Our clients tell us that it was way easier than they expected and not nearly as expensive. We can assure you that paying for an estate plan is far less risky and far less expensive than the alternative – litigation.
If you do not make a Will the law makes one for you and you may not like what is “says”.
If you do not prepare your own plan, the law of the State of Colorado determines your plan for you. In many cases, those default laws (the laws of intestacy) produce a bad result. Don’t let the default rules take the place of doing your own personalized plan.
All the planning in the world cannot eliminate all risks.
Catastrophic and unpredictable events do happen. People make irrational decisions. Family can become estranged, and the default rules in the law can create undesirable outcomes. When disputes arise and cannot be resolved one may need to bring an action or defend against one.
At Sutherland & Connor, we handle legal disputes that involve matters such as:
- Omitted Heirs
- Will Contests
- Family Allowances and Spouse Shares
- Fiduciary Wrongdoing and Defense
- Contested Guardianship and Conservatorships
We are pragmatic. We look for resolutions. We will zealously advocate for your position while keeping you advised of the expense and the unpredictability of litigation. No one wants to be here; but if you are we you will be relieved by how much we can help.
Speak to an attorney today
Tell us how we can be of service and one of our team members will contact you.
I treat my clients, opposing counsel, the mediator, the Judge, and all parties with respect. Mutual respect can make the difference in bringing a matter to a resolution. That, in turn, saves my client’s money.
Stephanie Cotton-Maceta, Attorney
Before initiating legal action and throughout the process the parties engage in process called “discovery.” This includes exchanging relevant documents, establishing the facts, taking depositions, and interviewing witnesses. We are fact finders. We do not speculate about what happened. We are on a mission to establish what has happened and apply the law to the facts. Our goal at Sutherland & Connor isn’t to bury the parties or the Court with irrelevant issues – but to focus on the facts and the law. Doing so saves time and money.
Alternative Dispute Resolution
Increasingly, the Court will require the litigants to participate in alternative dispute resolution. The most used method is called Mediation. At Sutherland & Connor we know the mediators, we know how to prepare for and conduct a mediation. The Court will make yes or no decisions, mediators can help the parties find a workable solution. At Sutherland & Connor we help you think about approaches to settlement, and we know how to get from the negotiating table to the final court orders. Let us help you find a solution.
Many people will say it is “not about the money.” But rest assured, when you are talking about an estate it is ultimately about the money. When you are paying legal fees, it is about the money. At Sutherland & Connor we understand this reality. We will continuously assess the financial practicalities.
Many clients come to us wanting “to put this behind them.” That is understandable and fighting just to fight goes against our practice philosophy. We are here first and foremost to help you get to resolution. At Sutherland & Connor we keep you advised, but you call the shots.