Most California trust and estate disputes are emotionally intense, and none more so than sibling conflicts over the care of an aging parent. Like a child custody fight in the family law context, siblings battle over whether Mom will remain in the home where she lives, move in with one of them, or move to an assisted living facility. They fight over who will manage Mom’s finances and interact with her doctors.
California courts have the tools to resolve these disputes, but struggle to evaluate competing claims of siblings and have a limited attention span to parse through them. Very often, when siblings cannot find middle ground, Mom’s care and finances will end up in the hands of a third party conservator and trustee, after many thousands of dollars in legal fees.