Coleman v. Bradshaw CA1/2

Filed 9/30/22 Coleman v. Bradshaw CA1/2 NOT TO BE PUBLISHED IN OFFICIAL REPORTS California Rules of Court, rule 8.1115(a), prohibits courts and parties from citing or relying on opinions not certified for publication or ordered published, except as specified by rule 8.1115(b). This opinion has not been certified for publication or ordered published for purposes of rule 8.1115. IN THE COURT OF APPEAL OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA FIRST APPELLATE DISTRICT DIVISION TWO DOLORES COLEMAN, Plaintiff and Respondent, A157968 v. DREXEL A. BRADSHAW, (San Francisco County Super. Ct. No. PTR-17-301118) Defendant and Appellant. Attorney Drexel Bradshaw, as trustee of a trust for the benefit of an elderly client, hired Bay Construction to perform work on the home which was the primary asset of the estate. The trial court found Bradshaw was a principal and substantial creditor in Bay Construction, the company lacked credible contracting credentials, and Bradshaw actively concealed and misrepresented these facts. The court removed Bradshaw as trustee for breach of his duties as trustee and intentional misrepresentations to the court in the course of his work as a fiduciary. On appeal, Bradshaw contends his due process rights were violated because the trial court improperly changed the theory of the case. He also challenges the trial court’s rulings as unsupported by the evidence. We affirm. 1 BACKGROUND The Conservatorship and Trust Actions Ora Gosey owned a two-unit building in San Francisco; she lived in the upstairs unit and rented the downstairs unit. Following Bradshaw’s advice to establish a trust, Gosey hired his law firm to draft the trust instrument, which she signed on January 3, 2007. The trust’s principal asset was the residence. Although Bradshaw testified that an associate drafted the trust instrument, the trial court found Bradshaw did so, crediting a 2014 declaration in which Bradshaw stated, “ ‘Ora [Gosey] and I created her Living Trust.’ ” The stated purposes of the trust were to provide for Gosey’s care and maintenance, to avoid conservatorship in the event of Gosey’s incapacity, and to facilitate transfer of the property upon Gosey’s death. Gosey’s primary interest was to ensure she could live in peace and comfort in her home.1 Article VII of the trust instrument provides: “Except as expressly provided in this document, the Trustee has the duties imposed by law . . . .” Specific “Limitations on Trustee’s Duty of Loyalty” are set forth in paragraph B of article VII. Most relevant here, paragraph B.5 of article VII provides, “As long as the Trustee does not act in bad faith or in disregard of the purposes of the Trust, it is not a breach of the Trust for the Trustee to: . . . [e]mploy the Trustee, a relative of the Trustee, or a business in which the Trustee has an interest, to perform needed services for the Trust or any 1 Article III.B. of the trust instrument stated: “In exercising the discretion granted to the Trustee, with respect to payments of trust principal, the Trustee should keep in mind …

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