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John B. Palley

John B. Palley

The California Probate Attorney - CaliforniaProbate.INFO
  • Probate, Estate Planning
  • California
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Rating: 10 Lawyer Rating - 10 out of 10
There are very few attorneys I have met that are as good as John is in Probate and Estate Planning. He knows his trade and takes care of his clients.
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I have been practicing estate and probate law since 1994. My practice is 100% focused on California probate court cases only. I pride myself on efficiency and answering my client's questions within minutes rather than days. I am a Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law. I have highest ratings on numerous websites including Martindale Hubbell "AV" rated, AVVO "10.0" rated, and am a "Superlawyer." I also am a past Sacramento Bee estate and probate "expert." I speak on estate and probate law to professional groups and have been quoted in numerous articles on the subject. I am happily married, a Rotarian since 2008, and missing the days when I used to coach the kid's sports teams in Roseville!

Practice Areas
Probate Administration, Probate Litigation, Will Contests
Estate Planning
Guardianship & Conservatorship Estate Administration, Health Care Directives, Trusts, Wills
Video Conferencing
  • FaceTime
  • Skype
  • Zoom
  • Free Consultation
  • Credit Cards Accepted
  • Contingent Fees
    In select cases.
  • Rates, Retainers and Additional Information
    I offer both flat fee and hourly fee arrangements in different cases.
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
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Professional Experience
Meissner, Joseph & Palley, Inc.
- Current
John B. Palley, Attorney at Law
McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific
J.D. (1994) | Legal Studies
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California State University at Sonoma
B.A. (1991) | Major: International Business; Semester in London 1989
Honors: Deans List
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Super Lawyer
Super Lawyers of Northern California
Super Lawyers selects approximately the top 5% of attorneys for standing out in their field.
10.0 Rated
AVVO has become an industry leader and their 10.0 rating is the highest offered among attorneys.
AV Rated
Martindale Hubbell
Martindale Hubbell has been rating lawyers for about 100 years and the "AV" designation is their highest.
Professional Associations
Rotary Club of Roseville
- Current
Activities: The Rotary Club of Roseville has been awarded as being an international leader in the Rotary world and is active locally and internationally to make our world a better place.
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Sacramento Estate Planning Council
- Current
Activities: The Sacramento Estate Planning Council is one of the oldest and most esteemed, of it's type, in the area.
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California State Bar  # 173469
- Current
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California State Bar Trusts and Estates Section
- Current
Activities: A leader in legislative reform and education in the areas of trust and estate law in California.
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Articles & Publications
Ask an Expert
Sacramento Bee
Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate Law
State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization
Websites & Blogs
My Main Website
My Law Firm's Home Page
My Blog
Legal Answers
140 Questions Answered
Q. My mother and her husband died, am I supposed to pay for the mortgage because I am the only one living at the house?
A: I would say that is a pretty common arrangement. In lieu of “rent” you would pay the mortgage and utilities. Of course this is a general answer and each situation is unique. If the mortgage is significantly more than fair market value rent than perhaps some other arrangement would be more fair to everybody. Again, each case is unique and fact specific!

Good luck!
Q. Is formal probate the only option to transfer title on 50 yr old mobile home that was appraised at 240k, in ca
A: I believe mobile homes are exempt from the normal probate rules and dollar limits. If you see California Health and Safety Section 18102 you can see the small estate rules. A small estate affidavit should work. If the pad is owned that will be a further issue as that will require some type of probate court involvement. That is, the pad and the mobile are separate. An experienced California probate attorney should be able to assist without great cost.
Q. Does the bank have to give me access to my mothers account since I’m the only here next of kin or beneficiary
A: No. The bank does not have to give you access just because you are next of kin. Is there a will? Is there a trust? Is there a POD or joint owner on the account? All of those things will be considered. If you are the next of kin and there is no will or trust and there is no joint owner or POD then I would think you could get access to the account 40 days after death by presentation of a death certificate and a completed small estate affidavit... IF the account (and all other assets subject to probate) is below the current Probate Code 13100 amount which is $184,500. Good luck! -John Palley
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Contact & Map
South Placer Office
2281 Lava Ridge Court
Suite 300
Roseville, CA 95661
Monday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Tuesday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Wednesday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Thursday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Friday: 8 AM - 4:30 PM
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed (Today)
Sacramento Office
1555 River Park Dr
Suite 108
Sacramento, CA 95815
Toll-Free: (888) 920-5983
Telephone: (916) 920-5983
Fax: (916) 920-9379
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