Phillip Szachowicz is an attorney in the San Diego office of RMO LLP. Phillip represents beneficiaries, trustees, administrators, executors, heirs, creditors and conservators in contested trust, estate, and probate litigation matters. Phillip brings extensive experience in all phases of litigation, from initial case analysis and strategy through appeal.
Phillip grew up in Morton Grove, Illinois and graduated cum laude from Loyola University Chicago with a B.A. in Philosophy and Minor in Political Science. He then attended the University of San Diego School of Law where he was a member of the International Law Journal and received the USD School of Law Honor Scholarship.
COMMUNITY & PROFESSIONAL INVOLVEMENT
- Member, Probate Attorneys of San Diego
- Member, San Diego County Bar Association – Trust & Estates Section
University of San Diego, School of Law
Loyola University Chicago
BA, Philosophy and Minor in Political Science, cum laude
- Member, State Bar of California
- Member, State Bar of Illinois
- Represented family members in recovering ownership of multi-million dollar family farm that had been transferred out of an irrevocable trust using decanting statute.
- Represented trustee of irrevocable trust in published appellate decision confirming that the trust could have been properly funded with life insurance policy proceeds even though all formalities typically required by the terms of the life insurance policy had not been satisfied.
- Successfully defended trustee and sole beneficiary against trust contest by disinherited heir. Then, when trial judge erroneously entered judgment that could have exposed the trustee to subsequent litigation, prevailed on appeal to modify judgment to insulate trustee from any possible further litigation.
- Represented former spouse in collecting unpaid child support through creditor’s claim procedure after her ex-husband relocated to a different state and then passed away before discharging child support obligations.
- Represented trustee, both in trial court and on appeal, in enforcing terms of previous settlement agreement, resulting from his co-trustee’s a breach of fiduciary duties, after the offending co-trustee erroneously claimed he had satisfied his obligations under the agreement.
- Represented decedent’s children in a contested probate accounting over various expenses the administrator attempted to charge against the estate, and then further successfully obtained an order from the court shifting a portion of the client’s fees and cost to several unrepresented heirs through a “common fund” theory of fee recovery.
- Represented surviving spouse in defending her status as beneficiary of her deceased husband’s retirement benefits against contest by decedent’s former wife and children, who had claimed lack of capacity and undue influence.
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- “Top 100 – Trust and Estate Litigation” SuperLawyers, Southern California Super Lawyers 2017-2022
- “Top Litigator”, Los Angeles Business Journal, Leaders of Influence: Litigators & Trial Lawyers, 2020-2021
- “Super Lawyer” SuperLawyers, Southern California Super Lawyers 2014-2022; “Rising Star” since 2006
- Trusts and Estates Litigator of the Year, Century City Bar Association 2018
- “Elite Boutique Trailblazer” National Law Journal 2018
- Best Lawyers in America, Litigation – Trusts and Estates, 2018-2022
- Rated AV Preeminent® 5 out of 5 by Martindale-Hubbell
- Rated “Superb 10” by Avvo