Recent Wins

Court of Appeal rejects claim that Michael Jackson gave away 10% of his business at a middle-of-the-night meeting

Four people claimed that Michael Jackson promised them 10% of The Michael Jackson Company in a middle-of-the-night meeting in 2006. After a long bench trial, the probate court rejected those claims on multiple grounds and confirmed that Jackson wholly owned the company.

California Supreme Court fundamentally alters probate law

In re Estate of Duke (2015) 61 Cal.4th 871 (California Supreme Court). From time immemorial, courts throughout the United States have been powerless to correct drafting mistakes in wills no matter how clearly the evidence established the testator’s actual intent. Courts could use the doctrine

Court of Appeal reverses probate court order dismissing GMSR’s client’s petition for failure to file a creditor’s claim

Novak v. Fay (2015) 236 Cal.App.4th 329 (California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Five) [published]. GMSR’s client, an attorney, agreed to represent a husband under a contingent-fee arrangement in a suit against the estate of his late wife on a pretermitted-heir theory. In

Court of Appeal affirms trial court order reforming $100 million trust

Crowe v. Tweten (2014) 2014 Cal.App. Unpub. LEXIS 9294 (California Court of Appeal, Fourth Appellate District, Division Two) [unpublished]. An elderly couple devised an estate plan with the assistance of counsel. They repeatedly stated that their intent was for the surviving spouse to inherit everything

Oct 26, 2012 Probate and Trusts
GMSR obtains dismissal of appeal challenging probate court order of instructions to trustee

Wells Fargo Bank v. D. Sprott (2012) 2012 Cal.App. Unpub. LEXIS 7824 (California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division One) [unpublished]. In the probate court, GMSR’s client—Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., acting as trustee of a testamentary trust—obtained an order instructing it how to implement

Court of Appeal affirms rulings voiding fraudulent transfer and permitting GMSR client to enforce $1 million appellate bond

Citizens Business Bank v. DeMille (2010) 2010 Cal.App. Unpub. LEXIS 4316 (California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Two) [unpublished]. The institutional trustee for a family trust won a judgment (which GMSR successfully defended on appeal) ordering the former trustee to pay the trust

Court of Appeal reverses probate court order refusing to enforce charitable testamentary gift

Banks v. Pacific Homes Foundation (2010) 2010 Cal.App. Unpub. LEXIS 1942 (California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, Division Five) [unpublished]. The petitioner, as successor trustee, sought a determination that a substantial gift to GMSR’s client, Pacific Homes Foundation, had lapsed and that the gift

Who We Serve

PUBLIC ENTITIES

Whether on appeal, assisting trial counsel, or advising government officials contemplating legislative action, GMSR provides unique insight into the complex laws that impact public entities.

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INSURERS

Where coverage may exist, GMSR represents insureds on appeal effectively and efficiently. Where it does not, the firm protects insurers’ right to deny claims.

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BUSINESSES

GMSR offers corporate clients objective assessments on appeal, based on a deep understanding of the limitations and opportunities of appellate review.

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TRIAL COUNSEL

The firm’s lawyers are team players, collaborating with trial counsel at any level from legal strategy to writing or editing trial court motions and appellate briefs.

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INDIVIDUALS

GMSR vigorously advocates the rights of individual plaintiffs and defendants, in both state and federal appellate courts.

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