Estate Planning, Trusts & Probate

Creating an estate plan or serving as a trustee or as a personal representative in a probate can be overwhelming. The estate planning, trusts and probate practice group at Lasher Holzapfel Sperry & Ebberson offers broad experience and personalized services to help you navigate the complexities of both local and federal law and make sound decisions. We have an exceptional team of attorneys and paralegals that are responsive, experienced, and efficient. We regularly collaborate to produce the best solutions for our clients, drawing on our collective knowledge and experience to address complex or challenging matters. Where appropriate, we also work with lawyers from our firm’s other practice areas such as Real Estate, engage in joint efforts with our Corporate & Business Law group in business succession matters, and collaborate in contested trust and probate matters with members of our Trust & Estate Disputes Group.

Advanced Estate and Tax Planning

Washington is currently the only state in the nation to have an estate tax and no income tax. Further, Washington has a state tax exemption that is a different amount from the federal tax exemption and currently has no gift tax. Our estate planning attorneys understand this complex tax framework and routinely design sophisticated estate plans to help our clients reduce federal estate and gift taxes as well as Washington estate taxes. Our estate planning attorneys will review your goals and assess whether to utilize advanced estate planning tools such as Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts, Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts, Charitable Lead Trusts, Charitable Remainder Trusts, Generation Skipping Trusts, Qualified Personal Residence Trusts, Family Limited Liability Companies, and income tax free sales to trusts.

Succession Planning for Companies

Once a business becomes successful and the founders reach retirement, the company must then traverse a difficult path to successfully pass on the control and ownership of the business. From outlines and checklists to complete succession plans, we help our clients transition their prosperous businesses to their families, and sometimes to their employees. This is a critical stage in the life cycle of any private business, and one that must be given high priority and which requires careful business and tax planning. We have assisted hundreds of clients with such plans, ensuring that valuable companies can carry on and prosper for generations.

Probate, Post-mortem Tax Planning and Trust Administration

When a death occurs in a family, we provide compassionate and efficient service at a difficult time. Our probate department helps executors manage and protect the assets of an estate, determine the validity of and pay creditor’s claims, resolve disputes among beneficiaries, and conduct valuable after-death tax planning. We also represent trustees of revocable living trusts and irrevocable trusts, providing counsel and direction regarding trustee duties, trust taxation, and trust distribution matters.

Team Highlights

  • Multiple group members have advanced degrees in tax, business administration or CPA certification
  • Includes attorneys listed as “Top Lawyers” by Seattle Magazine
  • Includes members of Seattle Met magazine’s Top 50 Women Lawyers in Washington
  • Consistently recognized by the legal community as Super Lawyers and Rising Stars
  • Includes members named as “Best Lawyer” by The Best Lawyers in America and a “Five Star Professional in Estate Planning” by Seattle Magazine
  • Includes attorneys consistently awarded Martindale-Hubbell’s highest rating, AV Preeminent