Lauren Galbraith’s practice focuses on complex trust and estate matters, including the development and implementation of estate plans, lifetime wealth transfer strategies, and business succession plans. Lauren works out of our Napa Valley office, where, in additional to traditional estate planning, she also advises clients on transition planning, particularly for families with closely held businesses and real property holdings such as wineries, vineyards, and wine-related businesses. She administers estates with these types of illiquid assets, as well.
Lauren is experienced at counseling high net worth families on equipping the next generation to manage assets, and in developing plans for effective wealth transfer, involvement in a family enterprise or other business endeavors. She also provides strategic guidance for philanthropic activities, including the formation and administration of private foundations and public charities. She has advised donors of substantial charitable gifts to major museums and hospitals, and prepared related gift agreements.
Much of Lauren’s work integrates family objectives with business strategy in order to support both. She implements techniques to eliminate or minimize estate tax, for example using lifetime gifts and sales, and to defer the payment of estate tax. Such methods can allow a business to remain family-owned, for example, or give the family the freedom to decide whether management should be vested in the next generation or outside managers.
Lauren is skillful at identifying and addressing potential conflicts before they occur. She has drafted co-tenancy and buy/sell agreements to facilitate joint ownership of property and businesses. Her practice also includes privacy planning to limit publicly available information about individuals and their holdings.
Her compassionate and detailed approach provides peace of mind for her clients through their various life events. Lauren often works closely with financial advisors and accountants, and frequently integrates herself into ongoing operating teams. She advises clients on a wide range of issues, including personal and family matters, and makes introductions as appropriate, for example to an employment attorney when workplace issues arise, or to appraisers, art advisors and other specialty service providers. For high net worth clients, their families and their businesses, Lauren is a true trusted advisor.