Michael J. Longyear


(206) 624-6271
Email vCard

« Back to all Attorneys

Michael J. Longyear has over 20 years of experience helping clients make important decisions regarding their personal and estate planning, guardianship proceedings, probate and trust administration, as well as elder law issues. He also devotes part of his legal practice to related real estate and business organization management matters.

Michael values the opportunity to educate his clients about proactive planning and personal decision making. Michael enjoys helping clients to solve complex problems and to meet the goals of individuals, couples and families. Taking a big picture approach toward his clients’ planning needs, Michael works with clients about their best options and opportunities in order to select a tailored course of action.

Michael has been recognized as a Washington Super Lawyer from 2001-2010 by Washington Law & Politics magazine. He was also named Seattle Best Lawyer in 2001 and 2003 by Seattle magazine. Michael also received the Highest Possible Peer Review Rating in Trusts & Estates from Martindale-Hubbell for being rated AV Preeminent by his peers.

Michael is a member of the Estate Planning Council of Seattle and serves on the executive committee of the Real Property, Probate and Trust Section of the Washington State Bar Association (WSBA). He has been recognized for his experience in the area of guardianship and served on the Washington Supreme Court Certified Professional Guardian Board from 2001 to 2008. He is a Certified Professional Guardian and serves as guardian of the estate, trustee, and estate administrator in routine and contested matters.

He is a Past-Chair of the King County Bar Association Guardianship and Elder Law Section, and is a Past Co-Chair of the Title 11.88 Mandatory Guardian ad Litem Training Program. He is a past Co-Chair of the King County Settlement Guardian ad Litem (SPR 98.16W) Training Program. Michael is Past-Chair of the Elder Law Section of the Washington State Bar Association and served on the Executive Committee from 1999 to 2008.

Published Works

  • Washington State Guardian Manual, Editor, 2004
  • King County Probate Policy Manual, Contributing Author, 2003
  • Washington State Guardianship Manual, Contributing Author, 2003
  • Capacity and Undue Influence – Guardianship and Durable Power of Attorney, Washington State Bar Association, Real Property, Probate and Trust Seminar, 2001
  • Capacity – A Transactional Issue, King County Bar Association, Advanced Guardianship Issues, 2001

Honors and Awards

  • Washington Super Lawyer – Washington Law & Politics, 2001 – 2010, 2014
  • Best Lawyers – Seattle Magazine, 2001, 2003
  • AV® Preemient™ 5.0 out of 5 rating in Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™
  • Clients’ Choice 2014 for Estate Planning, Avvo
  • Volunteer Award, King County Bar Association

Professional Associations & Memberships

  • Estate Planning Council of Seattle
  • King County Bar Association, Guardianship and Elder Law Section, Member Past-Chair
  • King County Bar Association, Real Property, Probate and Trust Section
  • Washington State Bar Association, Elder Law Section, Member Past Chair
  • Washington State Bar Association, Real Property, Probate and Trust Section, Current Member of Executive Committee
  • American Bar Association, Member

Representative Cases

  • Villegas v. Mcbride, 112 Wn.App. 689 (Wash.App.Div. I 2002)

Blog Posts

What’s Love Got to Do with It?

Separate and Community Property Considerations for Personal and Estate Planning What’s yours, what’s mine, and what’s ours? In Washington State, it depends. Property interests become blurred once two people enter into a committed intimate relationship (aka “CIR”) or get married. Our laws provide guidelines that determine what is separate property and what is community property. […]

The Art of Personal and Estate Planning : An Overview for Artists

While Personal and Estate Planning can be complex and difficult for anyone to do, artists have the added burden and complexity of making specific provisions for their art to ensure their legacy. This blog post addresses some important items for an artist to consider while doing their estate planning, as well as provides some insight […]

Guardianship Pt. 2: How to Start a Guardianship

This is part two of a series on guardianship.  The introduction to the series can be viewed here. How is a guardianship started? Anyone who is interested in the well-being of an alleged incapacitated person’s (AIP) can petition the court for the appointment of a guardian of the person and/or estate.  A guardianship petition contains allegations […]

Guardianship Pt. 1: An Introduction to Guardianship

Clients often come to Reed Longyear Malnati & Ahrens, PLLC with questions about guardianship and what it means.  While a guardianship proceeding can be stressful and complicated, it can be mitigated with the help of an experienced guardianship attorney, as well as taking a proactive approach to gain an understanding of the process and the […]

What is a General Durable Power of Attorney?

In Washington State a General Durable Power of Attorney (GDPOA) is a document that allows the principal to provide authority to an individual, known as an agent or attorney-in-fact, to manage personal finances and assets in the event that the principal is unable to do so due to incapacity (See State of Washington Statue RCW […]