Dispute Avoidance and Resolution

On March 25, 2002, a Wall Street Journal article observed that the hardest part of passing on your wealth is not trying to decipher tax laws, but “figuring out how to divide your assets so that your family isn’t hurt, angry, or fighting amongst themselves once you’re gone.” The expense, delay, publicity, and emotional distress of litigation can make what is already a difficult and emotionally charged time unbearable.

Courts and individuals are increasingly turning away from litigation to mediation, arbitration, and other forms of alternative dispute resolutions (ADR). One innovative form of ADR, called “collaborative law”, is a process in which parties and their attorneys, called “settlement counsel”, agree at the outset to attempt to resolve issues without litigation or threats of litigation. It has proven to be a cost-effective way to resolve disputes.

The real challenge, however, is to keep families and business owners from reaching the point where litigation or arbitration or even mediation are needed. What people really want is not to resolve disputes efficiently, but to avoid them whenever possible.

Boston Legacy Planning LLC offers Dispute Avoidance and Resolution services, so that disputes over the passing of property can be avoided, or resolved with a minimum of rancor. Our services include:

· Counseling to avoid future disputes

· Design of dispute resolution systems for wills, trusts, LLCs, corporations and family limited partnerships

· Mediation by an experienced mediator

· Collaborative law by a member of the Massachusetts Collaborative Law Council and author of widely respected articles on the settlement counsel approach

· Trust and estate litigation services

· Appeals in trust and estate disputes, asset protection, tax disputes and related areas of the law