Sean McKissick

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Sean McKissick provides strong and effective legal assistance throughout all stages of trust and estate disputes. Sean has extensive experience across a wide variety of litigation areas and industries in addition to trust and estate work, including healthcare, real estate, civil rights, and white-collar criminal defense.

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When a Health Care Directive Isn’t Enough – California Court Shreds Another Arbitration Agreement

Operators of skilled nursing facilities want their patients to enter into arbitration agreements.  While such agreements don’t eliminate the risk of litigation, they at least reduce the expense and exposure associated with potential jury trials. California appellate courts, however, have taken an ever narrower view of who can sign arbitration agreements on behalf of patients.  Just … Continue Reading

RCFEs Can’t Get Out of the Rain – California Court Finds Another Arbitration Agreement Unenforceable

Another day, another decision by the California Court of Appeal making it more difficult for residential care facilities for the elderly (“RCFEs”) to enforce their arbitration agreements. Upon admission to virtually any RCFE, a new resident will be asked to sign a stack of documents including an agreement to submit any future dispute to arbitration.  … Continue Reading

California Court Gives RCFEs More To Keep Them Up At Night

Recent decisions by the California Court of Appeal have heaped stress on the owners/operators of residential care facilities for the elderly (“RCFEs”). RCFEs, like other businesses, would prefer to avoid the court system and jury trials by obtaining residents’ consent to the arbitration of any disputes that might arise. But as California appellate courts are … Continue Reading

Look Before Leaping Into an Anti-SLAPP Motion

Suing the suer is a common strategy in California civil litigation. A special motion to strike, known as an anti-SLAPP motion, can be a powerful weapon against retaliatory litigation.  We have explained the use of such motions in trust and estate disputes. More specifically, we have explored their application to petitions to enforce no contest … Continue Reading

Fog Warning – Has One Bad Actor Made It Harder to Get Evidentiary Hearings?

There’s a saying amongst attorneys that “bad facts make bad law.”  By extension, “really bad facts” can throw probate procedure into flux by making it harder to qualify for an evidentiary hearing.  That’s arguably what happened in Conservatorship of Farrant (2021) 67 Cal.App.5th 370, a decision issued this month by the California Court of Appeal.  … Continue Reading

No Bad Faith Required – Trustee of Spendthrift Trust May Be Compelled to Pay Attorney Fees Under Family Code Section 2030

Section 2030 of California’s Family Code provides an important safeguard to ensure the fairness of marriage dissolution proceedings. It allows the Court to order a more financially well-off party to pay some or all of the other party’s attorney fees, beginning as early as the start of the proceedings. Section 2030 was enacted to put … Continue Reading
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