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Admitted to Practice

  • Washington, 1981

Ladd B. Leavens

Ladd Leavens has litigated a broad spectrum of cases including:
  • commercial and contract matters,
  • business and real property valuations,
  • partnership and LLC disputes and dissolutions,
  • shareholder disputes, and,
  • tax controversies.

Ladd also has extensive experience in real property litigation, including real estate development, land use, transactional, landlord-tenant, and boundary and title issues. Ladd also represents corporate and individual fiduciaries, and charitable and individual beneficiaries in trust and estate matters, including will contests, trust interpretation, fiduciary accountings, and breach of fiduciary duty issues.

He litigates these matters both at the trial and appellate level, and has tried dozens of cases in court and before arbitrators.

Representative Experience

Trust & Estate Litigation

Estate of Virgil v. Becker, Jr.

Representation of surviving spouse in contested estate litigation, including will contest, community v. separate property issues, and accounting and interpretation issues arising under husband and wife LLC agreement. (Ongoing)

Virgil J. Pague trust litigation

Representing trustee in connection with contested sale of Denny Triangle commercial real property. (Ongoing)

Representation of Seattle Children’s Hospital

Representing Seattle Children’s Hospital in a variety of contested matters in which Seattle Children’s Hospital has been a charitable beneficiary, including defense of will contests, and investigation and litigation of breaches of fiduciary duty by personal representatives and attorneys in fact. (Ongoing)

Representation of decedent’s estate in tax controversy

Representation of decedent’s estate against IRS over notices of multimillion dollar deficiencies in payment of gift and estate tax, arising out of disputes over valuation of undivided fractional interests in real property and minority non-controlling interests in business entities. (2012)

Frank v. Frank Family Foundation

Defense of family charitable foundation against action by son to unwind parents’ contribution of property to foundation. In re Estate of Frank, 146 Wash.App. 309 (2008), pet. for review denied, 165 Wash.2d 1030. (2009)

Estate of Frederick Steiner

Representation of personal representative in litigation over interpretation of shareholder buy-sell agreement governing rights of shareholders in company operating Freddie’s-brand non-native American casinos. Successful arbitration to determine value of casino properties. (2003)

Commercial Litigation

Higgins v. Day Creek Sand & Gravel

Representation of manager of LLC in litigation by surviving spouse of deceased member to dissolve LLC. (2012)

Litigation for investment management firm

Represented investment management firm in defense of claim of breach of fiduciary duty arising out of investment of client funds in auction rate securities. (2009)

Yountville Investors, LLC v. Bank of America N.A.

Obtained summary judgment dismissing all claims challenging the enforceability of an interest rate swap agreement. WL 2382862 (W.D. Wash. 2009)

Litigation for national energy producer

Represented a national independent power producer in commercial contract litigation arising out of the producer's purchase of the stock of a corporation in the process of permitting and building a gas-fired electrical cogeneration plant in Goldendale, Wash. (2005)

Securities fraud litigation for retail project developer

Representation of developer of retail project in multiparty securities fraud litigation in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington. (E.D. Wash. 2004)

Lockheed v. State of California

Represented the State of California in an action arising out of a failed $130 million contract to develop a child support enforcement data processing system. Seven-week trial in Sacramento held in late 1999. (Cal. 1999)

Hanford Nuclear Reservation litigation

Represented Westinghouse Hanford Corporation in defense of several thousand consolidated personal injury claims arising out of the operation of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation since 1943. Read more

Real Estate & Land Use Litigation

Avalon Downreit V, LP v. Grand-Glacier, LLC

Represented developer in litigation filed by owner of apartment building challenging amount of assessments for common areas and for dissolution of owners’ association. (2010)

First Hill Investors, LLC v. Sorrento Hotel Partnership

Represented hotel owner/operator in successful defense of claims of breach of lease brought by ground lessor. (2010)

Columbia Triangle Ventures v. City of Richland, Wash.

Represented the City of Richland in a developer's $8 million action against the city for unrecovered expenses incurred in connection with a mixed use real estate development in Richland. Obtained summary judgment in favor of City on developer's claims. (2002)

Additional Qualifications

  • Chair and Co-chair, Firmwide Commercial Litigation Practice, 1995-2004
  • Member, Firmwide Executive Committee, 1997-2003

Professional Recognition

  • Named one of the "Best Lawyers in America" in Commercial Litigation by Best Lawyers, 2008-present
  • Selected to "Washington Super Lawyers," Thomson Reuters, 2000-2017