Gerard represents clients in disputed matters involving estates, trusts, fiduciaries, guardianships, family issues, and closely held family businesses. Drawing on his experience in those litigated matters, he also counsels fiduciary and beneficiary clients in complex fiduciary matters and handles related estate planning and administration matters. Gerard seeks to achieve the desired result in a cost-effective manner, whether through litigation in the Probate, Surrogate’s or Chancery courts, or various alternative dispute resolution mechanisms.
Gerard handles numerous litigated and non-litigated family disputes in New Jersey and New York involving estates, trusts and guardianships, including estates as large as one billion dollars. He has represented both beneficiaries and corporate and individual fiduciaries (executors, trustee, or guardians) in matters involving estate, trust, and guardianship administrations. His work also involves contested family law matters, particularly those relating to estates. Gerard participates in the resolution of these disputes through mediation or other alternative dispute resolution mechanisms and is appointed by courts to mediate such disputes. Gerard also represents numerous clients in the complex appeals relating to these matters, resulting in a significant number of reported decisions.
Gerard counsels charitable and non-profit organizations (including universities, hospitals, and national organizations) in matters involving fiduciary decisions—such as mergers, affiliation, and the disposition of charitable gifts—and, when necessary, in related litigated proceedings. He also advises on enforcement of charitable provisions made by will, trust, or gift and handles regulatory matters involving such agencies as the Office of the Attorney General and other State regulatory entities.
Gerard devotes substantial time to advancing legal issues, legal education, and pro bono work. He has received the New Jersey State Bar Association Pro Bono award for his long-term work in representing victims of domestic violence and other matters. Gerard is an adjunct Professor of Law at New York Law School and plays an active role in the relevant professional associations such as the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (where he is a Fellow and Mid-Atlantic Regional Chair). He lectures and writes extensively on estate and trust matters, including the publication of several books on estate administration, litigation, and planning issues.