Lane Powell PC

Private Wealth Law Department

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Lane Powell is widely acclaimed for its strength in trust and estate matters. A wealth adviser notes: "They have a very wide breadth of services and capabilities, and you can cover everything you need to cover with the one firm." The private client team handles both contentious and non-contentious matters and is described by a source as "very easy to work with while being capable of the most sophisticated planning."

The firm enjoys a strong reputation in the Seattle market and often acts for wealthy individuals, family offices and charitable organisations. "All of the attorneys have an excellent bedside manner. They are clear communicators, very relatable and make clients feel at ease," says one commentator, while another source adds: "Despite their technical sophistication, they explain things in a clear and understandable way for clients."

Notable practitioners

Charles Riley is recognised by a peer as "a leading figure in the market who is very much involved in the private client business." He has longstanding experience of estate and tax planning as well as trust administration and family office matters. One source reports: "He really gains the trust of his clients and is very adept at managing relationships and helping clients move forward with their goals and plans." The source adds that "he is very personable and really connects with clients." His client skills are further praised by a commentator, who explains: "He has a great ability to take very complex structures and make them understandable to clients who do not have a background in this. He has a really good bedside manner with clients so they feel comfortable and understand the plan put in place for them."

Dawn Spratley handles private client matters for a variety of individual and institutional clients. "She's a top name and has been great over the years. We refer work to her due to her level of expertise being second to none," states a wealth adviser. Sources note that she is "well respected in the community" and that she is "a lovely person who is smart, thorough and accommodating."

Gail Mautner is co-chair of the firm's private client group and is recognised for her "very good expertise and experience when you are in a dispute situation." She is well established in fiduciary ligation matters and often acts in trust, probate and guardianship disputes. One local source notes: "She has won some of the biggest estate cases and is really excellent. Her words carry the weight of her expertise and wisdom." Another peer reports: "She is very willing to help us on all the issues and work through them in an effective way for the client. She has produced excellent outcomes on behalf of our client." The peer continues: "Often litigators are tough in court and she does that side of things well, but she is also collaborative and you can brainstorm with her."

Gary Kirk focuses his practice on advising closely-held and family business clients. One source notes: "He handles very wealthy multi-generational families and stays abreast of all new laws or changes in the field of estate planning." The source continues: "He is always very up to speed with the law and makes very considered suggestions. I have a ton of trust in him and couldn't recommend him highly enough." His client skills are also praised, with an interviewee enthusing: "He is a team player who understands how complex the issues are and how confusing they could be. He presents information in a very clear way and is good at handling many moving parts and coming to the right answer."

Heidi Orr advises high net worth families, individual beneficiaries, corporate fiduciaries and tax-exempt organisations on private wealth matters. "She does a really good job and clients are very happy with her service. She is personable and hands-on," reports one local source, while another interviewee notes: "She has a great bedside manner and is hugely efficient when dealing with complex matters which require a lot of attention and understanding."

Sources call Mary Lee Moseley "a very skilled attorney" who is "a big name in the market." She is co-chair of the private client team and is described by one source as "super well respected in the trust and estate planning space." The expert continues: "She adds a lot of value when working with clients, and her experience comes through when working with complex family planning issues." Another peer adds: "She is very strong and has a tax and accounting background so knows how to come at things from different angles." An interviewee further enthuses that "for any matters relating to the West Coast, she is my go-to person."

Sarah MacLeod advises on private client matters and is described as "an all-around very high-quality attorney." She is regularly sought after for charitable and philanthropic matters."Her word carries a lot of weight and she is very technically accomplished," reports an insider, who adds: "She quickly gains the trust of her client and becomes a close adviser to them." She is further praised by one peer as "a leader in the field," while another source states: "She has a very clear and comforting way of communicating with families. She is very proactive and always identifies the key issues for clients before they arise and ensures such issues are dealt with within the broader estate plan."