Archive for October, 2010

Araiza v. Younkin – Disposition of Bank Account Under Trust Law is Fundamentally Different from Result Under Law of Wills (2010-10-24)

The recent decision in Araiza v. Younkin (Sept. 30, 2010) 188 Cal.App.4th involved the disposition of a bank account following the death of the parent.  Under the law of wills, the beneficiary named on the account would have taken the funds, regardless of contrary language in the will. Ah, but the mysterious law of estate […]






Holmes v. Summer – Fiduciary Duties of Real Estate Broker (2010-10-17)

In the recent decision in Holmes v. Summer (Oct. 6, 2010) 188 Cal.App.4th 1510, the court discussed the fiduciary obligations owed by a real estate broker in a sales transaction.  The facts were not difficult. The broker represented the seller.  According to the opinion, “the buyers and the seller agreed to the purchase and sale […]






Weinberger v. Morris – Distribution is Not What Was Expected From Trust Agreement (2010-10-10)

Here’s a recent case in which the result cannot be what the decedent intended.  As a starting point, let’s discuss the law of wills. When a distribution is made by will (or by intestate succession), the gift is effected at the time of death.  Absent a disclaimer, the recipient and his or her heirs are […]






Safe Deposit Boxes Are Not as Safe as They Seem (2010-10-3)

Conventional wisdom is that a safe deposit box is a safe place to store valuable belongings.  And that’s true, as long as the owner keeps track of the contents of the safe deposit box. Yet, I have handled a case in which a bank denied, in writing, the existence of a safe deposit box in […]