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Oakland Probate Lawyers 

The Triay Law Office was founded in 1978 after Charles Triay took on his first contested will case. He then used his experiences to develop a specialty niche practice in probate litigation matters. Combining his acute attention to detailed legal issues with a compassion for grieving families, Mr. Triay has built a solid reputation as a top probate litigation attorney. 

In addition to litigation, Attorney Charles Triay regularly represent estate administrators and trustees in non-contested estate and trust administrations.

We are willing to take over a case, work as co-counsel with a referring attorney or work as a consultant. Unlike many other firms, the Triay Law Office receives probate litigation attorney fees on either a contingency or an hourly basis, depending on the case and the client’s desires. 

We Handle Probate Cases Throughout Northern California

Our principal office is in Oakland, in the Bay area. We handle cases throughout Northern California, including the Counties of San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Napa, Sonoma as well as Mendocino. Our law firm receives most of its clients by attorney referral. 

Probate Litigation

Triay Law Office focuses on probate litigation matters concerning:

  • Contesting and defending wills and trusts where an interested party is asserting the will or trust is defective or the result of undue influence.
  • Elder financial abuse cases, which can include issues such as lack of capacity and undue influence.
  • Contesting and defending fiduciary accountings of probate administrators, executors, and trustees, including breach of fiduciary duty.
  • Asserting claims for spousal rights against an estate or trust, including cases involving an omitted spouse
  • Bringing creditors’ claims against a probate estate or trust or defending against claims.

This list is not exhaustive of the claims and objections an interested party can make against an estate under California probate law. Beneficiaries and other interested individuals must bring their claims and objections as soon as possible, as their rights may be lost forever if not timely asserted.

What Our Former Clients Say About Us

  • Knowledgeable and Caring

    “He sounds very caring and knowledgeable and creditable. And called me back right away.”

  • Impressive Expertise

    “When an evil stepsister tried to steal my father's estate last year, Triay Law Office in Oakland, CA, and Paul Epstein in particular, stepped in with impressive expertise to recover my Dad's property.”

  • Forthright and Patient

    “Charles Triay was different from our very first contact. He was forthright, patient, a good listener and gave generously of his time to help us determine appropriate action.”

FAQ Learn More About Probate Litigation

  • Probate is the legal process of administering a deceased person’s last will and testament or according to intestate law. Certain trusts only go into effect upon the death of the testator, and may therefore be part of a probate administration. California probate courts oversee probate administration and probate litigation.

  • Probate litigation is the term for a lawsuit when a party, such as an heir, beneficiary, creditor, third party or omitted spouse contests a will. Probate litigation also includes charges against fiduciaries of trusts or estates, or creditors’ claims against an estate.

  • There are several different reasons for contesting a will. For example, claims of undue influence and lack of capacity are common causes for probate litigation. Some individuals may argue that the will is defective, or that the estate trustee is breaching a fiduciary duty. If you are an omitted spouse or if your spouse leaves you less than required by California law, you may have a claim against the estate as part of your spousal rights.

  • A fiduciary duty is the obligation to act honestly, fairly and in good faith when handling the deceased person’s estate. There are multiple fiduciary duties that executors, administrators and trustees are legally required to follow, including keeping proper accountings of all investments, as well as money going in and out of the trust or estate. Violation of this duty or poor performance in administrating the estate may result in legal action by the estate’s beneficiaries.

  • Just as in all types of civil litigation, the law allows you to represent yourself in a probate proceeding. However, we strongly advise having a seasoned probate litigation lawyer handle your case to ensure that California probate law upholds your best interests.
  • Even in death, a person is liable for their debts. For example, creditors may bring claims against a person’s estate after their death to receive payment.

  • A codicil is a document that makes small changes to the terms of a last will and testament. An individual may use codicils when they want to amend their last wishes without having to create an entirely new will. A codicil will only be legally valid and enforceable if executed in the same manner as a will. Codicils are particularly useful upon remarriage, additional children born, or new property acquired by an estate.

  • If a person dies without a will, then California intestacy laws will dictate the division of their estates to the heirs at law. These laws will then distribute property and assets depending on the marital status, number of children and surviving relatives of the deceased individual.

Schedule Your Consultation Today

Please contact our Bay Area probate litigation lawyers online or by dialing (510) 330-2203 to review your case and explore legal options available to you.

  • Willing to Take Over A Case
  • Hourly and Contingency Basis Fee Options
  • Provides Unsurpassed Personal Service
  • Specializes in Probate Litigation
  • In Practice Since 1977