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K&L Gates’ probate, trust, and fiduciary duty litigation practice is composed of a dedicated and diverse group of lawyers with subject matter knowledge in all aspects of complex litigation. The firm represents a wide range of clients, including individual and corporate fiduciaries, public and private charities and foundations, trustees, guardians, conservators, businesses, and institutions, and appears for clients in all state, federal, tax, and appeals courts. The firm manages domestic and international litigation and assesses and resolves disputes on a local and global basis.

K&L Gates regularly represents corporate and individual clients in a broad array of disputed matters, including estate tax and administration issues, income tax disputes, probate and trust administration conflicts, closely held business disputes, and disputes arising from all types of fiduciary relationships. Lawyers prosecute and defend challenges to wills and trusts, and frequently handle litigation necessary to reform or clarify trust instruments as well as work on matters involving guardianships, conservatorships, and contests involving the validity of cohabitation and antenuptial agreements.

The firm’s nationally renowned trusts and estates lawyers partner their substantive knowledge with the outstanding courtroom talents of their probate litigation colleagues, achieving longstanding and significant success in resolving disputes for our clients. Careful case assessment and precisely defined litigation plans allow for the optimization of case outcomes. 

Business and family relationships and productivity are adversely affected by the stress of litigation.  As a result, our lawyers attempt to work not only on the litigation, but also on value-added settlements.

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Represented a charitable beneficiary and obtained the removal of a corporate trustee of a charitable trust.
Represented an adult child in litigation involving claims to remove the father as trustee of trusts with over a billion dollars in assets.
Assisted the beneficiaries in connection with a personal representative's breaches of fiduciary duty during the administration of an estate and assisted the heirs in obtaining control of a business entity in which the second spouse attempted to claim an interest.
Represented the beneficiary and successfully obtained distributions from an estate that were improperly withheld by personal representative.
Successful challenge of a lower court's order permitting an agent to gift property for $1 under a "Power of Attorney to Sell Real Property". Litigation included two appearances at the Pennsylvania Superior Court, which held that the case was distinguishable from precedent set by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. After remand for hearing, the trial court ordered that the gift was improper in our client's favor. 
Defended a corporate trustee against breach of fiduciary duty claims by beneficiaries and successor trustee.
Defended corporate trustees, including two national banking institutions, against breach of fiduciary duty claims in various probate and/or trust litigation matters.
Defended co-trustees of a revocable trust and co-executors of an estate in a suit seeking over $100 million for breach of fiduciary duty and constructive trust brought by the daughters from a first marriage.
Defense against hostile efforts to compel production of private family wealth and estate planning information in the context of divorce litigation.
Handled emergency trust modification and partition action driven by tax implications arising from the sale of a corporation and requiring emergency approval by the Attorney General’s office.