The largest, and one of the most established law firms in the region, Williams Parker, has stirred some buzz in the area business community with its latest move: enhance its fiduciary services department.
“We’re not competing with accountants or soliciting financial advisory services business,” Williams Parker President Ric Gregoria tells Coffee Talk. “Were not encroaching on (financial firms’) territory.”
The Sarasota-based firm, instead, says Gregoria, is filling what it has seen as a gap in the marketplace. That includes working with clients serving as a fiduciary who may need assistance. It also includes the firm’s partners who have been asked to serve as fiduciary on behalf of clients who don’t intend to engage a corporate fiduciary.
The move to grow the division, says Gregoria, is connected to hiring a pair of top-level pros in their field. One, hired in late 2017, is Susan Park, a former market director for estate settlement with U.S. Trust, among other roles with other large banks. Park is now director of fiduciary administration at Williams Parker. More recently, the law firm named Aubrey Lynch, a CPA and principal at CS&L CPAs, director of fiduciary tax matters. “We handpicked them,” Gregoria says.
Both Park and Lynch will work in conjunction with the firm’s trusts and estates practice. “We don’t know many other firms doing this in Florida, a few are doing it nationally,” Gregoria says. “We have plans to expand it.”