William “Bill” Carey is the Senior Litigation Attorney of the firm and brings an extensive background in probate litigation experience. Bill helps families resolve conflict stemming from inheritance disputes. As blended/second families become “the new normal,” disputes over the transition of assets from one generation to the next become more and more common.
Bill attended Miami University and graduated with a B.A. in English. While at Miami, he acted as Captain of the sailing team and Race Chairman of the Mid-West Collegiate Sailing Association as he raced sailboats competitively all over the country. After college, Bill attended Case Western Reserve University School of Law in Cleveland, Ohio while continuing to race sailboats on the Great Lakes and East Coast. After graduation, his love of sailing brought him to San Diego, California where he is an active member of the San Diego Yacht Club.
Most probate attorneys do not have Bill’s heavy litigation experience. Bill started out defending massive toxic mold litigation on behalf of developers and general contractors. During this time, Bill conducted well over 700 depositions and appeared in courts in San Diego, Orange County, Los Angeles, and Riverside several times a week. From construction defect litigation, Bill turned to Admiralty litigation representing cruise lines and shipping companies in a wide-variety of claims including ADA compliance lawsuits. This work required travel to Hawaii, San Francisco and Oakland.
Back in San Diego, Bill happened to notice there were fewer competent litigators practicing in the Probate Courts than what would be expected. Since the majority of estate planning and probate attorneys deal with non-contested proceedings, there is a definite need for litigators in the Probate Courts to represent clients in contested matters. Probate litigation covers disputes between beneficiaries of a family trust, petitions to transfer assets into a trust (for instance, real estate purchased after a trust was created), and accusations made against a trustee who may or may not be stealing from a family trust. Bill brings this heavy-litigation experience to contested probate matters.
Bill represents BENEFICIARIES of a family trust when there is a dispute over the legality or basic fairness of the inheritance plan.
Bill represents TRUSTEES when there is an allegation of a breach of the trustee’s duties.
Bill represents ESTATE PLANNERS when their estate planning documents are being challenged.