Wealth Planning, Administration, and Disputes

Serving individuals and organizations in all aspects of estate administration, both basic and complex.

Trusts, estates, and fiduciary disputes come with unique challenges, often driven by complicated and interwoven legal, emotional, financial, and strategic factors. When a problem involving an estate or a fiduciary obligation becomes litigious, clients need problem solvers.

At Robins Kaplan LLP, our mastery of wealth planning and administration, fiduciary law, the courtroom, and challenging valuation scenarios makes us excel at resolving wealth planning, administration, and disputes. Our national reputation for litigation excellence includes wins in the fiduciary arena for trustees and fiduciaries, personal representatives, beneficiaries, guardians, and conservators. In addition, our lawyers have an in-depth understanding of the complicated system of laws and regulations that control various fiduciary obligations, end-of-life wealth distribution, and property and asset valuation. We also know the best ways to navigate the emotional issues that often come up in wealth planning and administration, and disputes. Whether litigating fiduciary matters, inheritance or succession issues, or contested charitable donations, we help clients cut through confusion to find a path to resolution.


Our attorneys litigate a wide range of wealth planning, administration, and disputes, including:

  • Pre-Litigation Counsel
  • Probate Disputes
  • Will/Trust Contests
  • Will/Trust Construction Disputes
  • Actions for Post-Mortem Reformation or Modification of Trusts and Wills
  • Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts
  • Representation of Fiduciaries and Beneficiaries at Mediation
  • Valuation Disputes
  • Actions for Appointment or Removal of Fiduciaries
  • Claims by Heirs for Misappropriation or Breach of Fiduciary Duty
  • Actions for Accounting
  • Contested Guardianship Matters
  • Contested Conservatorship Matters
  • Fiduciary Litigation
  • Appellate Cases
  • Trust-Related Commercial Disputes

In addition, because of the specific demands of South Dakota trust litigation, our Sioux Falls office has a dedicated focus on resolution of South Dakota trust disputes. Managed by Brendan Johnson, who previously served as the presidentially appointed United States Attorney for the District of South Dakota, our South Dakota trust litigation practice combines the resources and experience of a national law firm with an in-depth understanding of South Dakota litigation and South Dakota trust disputes.

Clients and Industries

We represent people and organizations facing wealth planning, administration, and disputes litigation, including:

  • Individuals and Families
  • Beneficiaries
  • Charitable Organizations
  • Closely Held Enterprises and Their Members
  • Closely Held Family Enterprises and Their Members
  • Corporate Fiduciaries
  • Conservators
  • Guardians
  • Nonprofits
  • Personal Representatives
  • Trustees and Fiduciaries

Wealth Planning, Administration, and Disputes


Fall 2020
From the Trenches: A Spotlight Interview with Larry Farese
The Robins Kaplan Spotlight, Vol. 5, No. 3
Fall 2020
The IRS Says “Nice Try.” Case Illustrations of Unsuccessful Valuation Efforts
Brendan Johnson and Ena Kovacevic - The Robins Kaplan Spotlight, Vol. 5, No. 3
Fall 2020
Valuation: The “Eye of the Beholder” Causes Disputes
Anne M. Lockner, Richard R. Zabel - The Robins Kaplan Spotlight, Vol. 5, No. 3
Summer 2020
The Brave New World of Virtual Notarization
Steven Orloff, Manleen Singh - The Robins Kaplan Spotlight, Vol. 5, No. 2
Summer 2020
What Could be the Harm? Minnesota's Harmless Error Statute
Matthew Frerichs, Ena Kovacevic - The Robins Kaplan Spotlight, Vol. 5, No. 2
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