Finding the Right California Probate or Trust Administration Attorney

A crucial thing to know when in the market for legal counsel in any area is that, once an attorney has been licensed, they can claim to practice in any field. There are no checks or regulations to such claims, so a firm advertising that they practice probate or trust administration doesn’t necessarily mean that they are competent in that field.

It isn’t unusual to find attorneys listing off several practice areas in their advertising. 

Bankruptcy, real estate, personal injury, and family law have nothing to do with probate or trust administration. There is no crossover; cases do not even go to the same court. However, many attorneys with a superficial understanding of the field will assume their knowledge is proficient enough to take on clients.

There are three primary ways to find out which practice areas an attorney claims to practice:

  • Check the Yellow Pages. Remember to check in multiple sections, as some firms will advertise individual practice areas separately.
  • Check the firm’s website. Practice areas are typically listed on the homepage.
  • Call or visit the attorney and ask.

However, you will not find an attorney who does probate or trust administration exclusively. Instead, the attorney will have related practice areas, such as estate planning. You want to find a firm that focuses on the creation and execution of wills and trusts.

To further test the attorney’s proficiency in probate and trust administration:

  • Ask if they have created any books, DVDs, or other materials designed to educate their clients on the estate distribution process. Besides demonstrating their expertise in the field, exploring these materials will help you make more informed decisions during the case.
  • Find testimonials. Positive feedback from previous clients doesn’t mean that your case will go as smoothly, but if you can’t find any clients who describe positive outcomes with the attorney, then there may be a problem.
  • Look at who else they have represented. Ideally, you want a mix of individuals and organizations, particularly banks, trust companies, and private fiduciaries.

Are you looking for legal counsel in California trust administration or probate? The California trust lawyers at The Grossman Law Firm offer San Diego estate planning, probate, trust administration, will contests, and trust litigation. For a no-cost consultation, call toll-free 888-443-6590, or use our quick online contact form.

Also, be sure to order Scott Grossman’s essential FREE book and DVD Probate a Will or Administer a Trust after the Death of a Loved One.

Scott Grossman

Scott Grossman


The Grossman Law Firm, APC · 525 B Street, Suite 1500, San Diego, CA 92101 · (951) 523-8307