Oregon Trust Law Attorney - Arnold Law in Eugene, Oregon – Powerful Advocacy. Proven Results.

Oregon Trust Law Attorney

Eugene attorney Emilia Gardner can assist clients in the creation of living trusts, a place where ownership of assets can go and be changed during your lifetime, typically with certain probate-avoidance goals.  Oregon trust law does not have to be difficult to understand.  At Arnold Law, our goal is to educate you of the options based on your finances and based on your personal goals, so that you can make an informed decision.

Living Revocable Trust vs. Will

Trusts are not for everyone and the costs of preparing complicated Oregon trusts can sometimes be greater than the costs of probating a small estate in Oregon probate court.

There are certainly a lot of things to consider when making the decisions regarding trusts vs. wills.  There has been a lot of media coverage of the advantages of a trust, many of which are true; but they are not the solution for everyone.  That is why we advise clients of their options in a cost-benefit analysis methodology.  At Arnold Law, we want our clients to know the true costs of an estate plan which include the attorney fees, probate, conservator costs if incapacitated, asset transfer costs if using a trust, etc.  These costs need to be compared with a will costs plus probate.

If you have assets (real property) in multiple states, a living trust could avoid the risks of multiple probate proceedings.  This is often useful for our California clients who have retired in Oregon and whose children are grown.

Living Will vs. Living Trust

And remember, a living a trust is NOT a living will.  A living will is essentially a document that directs health care decisions if you are incapacitated, while a living trust deals with your property after death (and allows you to keep control of your property while you are living).

Transferring Ownership to the Trust

After deciding on a living trust over a will, you have to decide how to fund it, i.e., what property to transfer to the the trust.  The most common property to transfer to a trust is real property.  TITLE TRANSFER MUST BE DONE BEFORE DEATH TO AVOID PROBATE.  If you do not transfer actual title, then when you die, probate will need to be used to effectuate the change of title.  This typically defeats the purpose of the trust documents.  You end up with the worst of both worlds: an expensive trust document and the expense of probate.

Irrevocable Trusts vs. Living/Revocable Trusts

The difference between a living trust and an irrevocable trust is that the latter cannot be changed after the trust document has been signed. You can use these irrevocable trusts in concert with living trusts. For instance, you can have control over the assets during your lifetime in a revocable, living trust but then have them convert into several separate irrevocable trusts after your death.  This can be designed to control assets held by children.

Estate Tax Protection

There are also tax avoidance reasons for an irrevocable trust.  Since the trust is irrevocable, you no longer own the property once you transfer the property ownership into the trust.  Therefore, there is less estate to tax upon your death.  There are lots of other options and factors that you can research online and then discuss with Emilia Gardner to hash out the Oregon trust law and document particularities.

Oregon Trust Attorneys

At Arnold Law, Emilia Gardner can assist you in a new estate plan and help you decide if a living trust or irrevocable trust is right for you.

Emilia can assist our Oregon trust law clients with a sensible approach to your estate plan.  Call 541-338-9111 to discuss options and to inquire about estate planning services, or use the form to the left to send an email.

Interpreters Available
  • Representative Cases


    Product Liability/Wrongful Death - G-Max Motorcycle Helmet

    Husband and wife were on their motorcycle when negligent driver pulled out in front of them. Wife's helmet strap webbing failed and her helmet came off. She died of head trauma. Six figure settlement with G-Max distributor.

    Nursing Home Death

    Complex litigation involving a CNA who failed to give anti-seizure medication to Vietnam War veteran several times. He died from seizure. Result: Confidential settlement.

    ODOT dump truck crashes into car in work zone

    An elderly woman was following a dump truck into a work zone. The flagger failed to stop traffic as they entered the work zone and the truck failed to radio ahead that there was traffic with him. The truck pulled off the road while in the work zone and then re-entered the roadway without looking and struck the car causing injuries to her shoulder (requiring surgery on both). ODOT denied liability and paid for expensive litigation with tax funds before paying a reasonable settlement amount. Our firm employed a civil engineer with years of work zone experience to analyze the lack of a proper safety plan.

    Wrongful Death - Drunk Driver Kills Teenage Girl

    After a party in the hills, a drunk driver rolls his car off of an embankment, seriously injuring his passengers and killing our client's teenage daughter. The car's severely intoxicated owner and surviving passengers claim the decedent was driving. Our investigation uncovered a possible conspiracy between the kids to blame the girl who couldn't speak for herself.  The DA's Office convicted the car owner for Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor but refused to have the blood in the car analyzed for DNA to establish who was driving. Arnold Law was able to seize the blood evidence, had DNA tests performed, and hired a passenger kinesiologist to determine the locations of the occupants based on blood location.  The discovery of the car owner's blood on the steering column led to a negotiated settlement between the injured occupants and the owner's insurance company.

    DUII (Driving Under the Influence of Intoxicants)

    DUII - Eugene Railroad Tracks

    Client accused of driving on to railroad tracks when officer finds client exiting from the driver's side of a vehicle stuck on tracks 1/4 mile from the nearest road. Case dismissed after jury trial after discovery that law enforcement failed to investigate homeless witnesses who remember a woman driving a car through bedroom at 3 a.m.

    DUII - Springfield Tavern Collision

    Client accused of driving his truck into the side of the bar causing damage and then fleeing scene. Law enforcement arrested him later at his home after he had some drinks at home. After a two-day Springfield Municipal Court jury trial, where cross-examination focused on the police officers flawed investigation (by failing to investigate client's claims of drinking at home), and after less than thirty minutes of deliberation, the jury found him not guilty of DUII. Client did not testify.


    Harassment - Self-defense after being threatened by baseball bat and pepper spray

    A Eugene Municipal Court jury found client not-guilty of physical harassment after 21 minutes of deliberations. Client accused of tackling a man in his estranged wife's home and throwing him into the bushes after man confronted client with baseball bat and pepper spray. Accusations stemmed from a child custody dispute between the client and his estranged wife. Client did not testify.

    DV/Felony Assault IV - Menacing with Bag of Potatoes

    Client facing several years in prison for second assault conviction against his wife. Global settlement included less than one-year in prison and future parenting time with his children.


    Rural Easement Dispute - Defense of easement obstruction

    Mike Arnold and Emilia Gardner defended a rural couple in a complex easement and breach of contract dispute with several counterclaims and third-party claims involving a non-profit and corporate landowner. After several site visits with expert witnesses, Arnold Law petitioned the court to force the unreasonable plaintiff to a settlement conference when plaintiff was stating that there was no way to settle the claims. After site visits with Arnold Law's expert witnesses, we were able to boil down this complicated case with several years of relevant facts to only a few salient factual and legal issues. This analysis proved crucial in resolving the claims with a settlement several weeks before trial, saving the clients tremendous amounts of attorney fees.


    Father’s Rights—Parental Alienation with a Bumpy Past

    Emilia Gardner obtained custody for Father after Mother filed a frivolous restraining order against Father and absconded with the children from Oregon to prevent Father from having contact with the children. Of special importance in this case was Mother and Father’s history of domestic violence and drug abuse. Father had completed his probation and treatment, and had achieved many months of sobriety. We were able to show the court through multiple hearings that he had been rehabilitated, had prepared to be the primary parent and was acting in the children’s best interests by seeking custody. We were able to get the restraining order dismissed, safely retrieve the children and return them to Oregon, and obtained orders to both safeguard Father’s relationship with the children and protect the family from future drug use and domestic violence.

    Father’s Rights—Abusive Wife Flees with baby

    Emilia Gardner obtained custody for Husband and a safety focused parenting plan restricting Wife’s access after Wife disappeared from the marital home with the parties’ one-year old child. Wife had a history of drug and alcohol use, and had previously physically abused both Husband and the child. Ms. Gardner helped Father obtain emergency custody of the child under the Immediate Danger statute, located the child, and coordinated with law enforcement agencies and the Department of Human Services to safely bring the child home.

    Father flees with children to Oregon—conflicting jurisdiction

    In a contentious California divorce, Husband took the children for a short visit and then fled in secret with the children to Oregon, where he filed for divorce and custody of the children despite a pending divorce case in California and previous orders from the California court granting mother physical possession of the children while the case was pending due to past abuse by Husband against Wife. We helped the frantic Wife safely retrieve the children, and convinced the Oregon court after multiple days in trial to stay the custody proceeding in Oregon pursuant to the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), allowing the California case to proceed. Wife returned to California safely with the children.

    Special Needs Parenting Time

    The years of physical and verbal abuse against Mother by Father adversely impacted the parties’ high functioning special needs child, who as a teenager began to exhibit alarming violent and sexualized behaviors at school as well as regression in communication and hygiene when Father sought to enforce his parenting time after an absence of several years. At trial, Father disputed the child’s diagnosis and blamed Mother for the child’s sexualized behavior. With the support and information provided by the child’s school teachers, therapists, community support group and friends called by Arnold Law to testify at trial, the Court crafted a child-centric parenting plan for the benefit of this troubled teen and ended Father’s cyclical aggressive contact with the child.