For more than three decades, WM. HAROLD BORTHWICK has focused his practice on family wealth transactions and succession planning, including the drafting of wills, trusts, and related instruments, the administration of probate estates and irrevocable trusts, and lifetime transfer strategies including charitable giving through trusts and private foundations. Mr. Borthwick’s exclusive focus is on the planning needs of high and ultra high net worth individuals including members of the Forbes 400. Mr. Borthwick also has considerable experience in the purchase, sale, financing, development, and leasing of commercial real estate which he can bring to bear on the needs of his clients.
Mr. Borthwick is a lifelong resident of Los Angeles. He received his AB degree in Economics from U. C. Berkeley in 1971 and his JD degree from UCLA Law School in 1974. He has practiced continually with the firm since graduation from law school, and has served the firm in various management roles including as managing partner.
WM. HAROLD BORTHWICK began practicing with the firm upon graduation from law school in 1974. His practice for the first decade was wide ranging, including trusts and estates, corporate transactions, taxation, commercial real estate finance and bankruptcy, and Taft-Hartley retirement trusts, giving him a broad base of experience to draw on. His practice evolved over time into what is today is an exclusive focus on family wealth and succession planning for high and ultra high net worth individuals, including members of the Forbes 400. Mr. Borthwick is noted for his ability to handle complex family situations; for example, being able to represent a husband and wife during their marriage and, after their divorce, continuing to represent them both individually. He is also noted for a common sense attitude towards contested matters, anticipating potential problems before they flare up, and when they do using every reasonable effort to find common ground for resolution, thus avoiding or minimizing expensive and stressful litigation and allowing parties can move on with their lives.
Mr. Borthwick believes in being engaged in his community. He has served on the Boards of Trustees of a number of organizations including The John Thomas Dye School and Marlborough School, where he served as Board President. Other past community service includes service as a member of the Board of Governors of the Research Institute of Childrens Hospital Los Angeles and as Chair of the Client Relations Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association. He is active in fund raising for a number of institutions, and serves as a trustee of a number of private foundations.
Mr. Borthwick was born and raised in Los Angeles. He attended Harvard School, now Harvard-Westlake School, graduating in 1966. He was selected as an English-Speaking Union exchange scholar to spend a “second senior year” in England, attending Kelly College in Tavistock, Devon for an academic year. He then attended the University of California at Berkeley, where he received an AB degree in Economics in March, 1971, graduating a quarter early. After six months in the accounting office of an automotive aftermarket company, he attended UCLA Law School, where he received his JD degree in June, 1974. His entire career has been spent with the firm, and while a general partner he served the firm in various management roles including as managing partner.