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Mark Powell, Esq.

Senior Counsel | Nonprofit & Estate Planning Practice

Mark Powell serves as Senior Counsel at FPLG and is a member of the firm's Nonprofit & Tax-Exempt Organizations and Estate Planning & Charitable Giving practice groups. Mr. Powell has practiced in these areas of law for more than 25 years, with experience at both local and national law firms.

He is certified as a specialist in Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate Law by the California State Bar’s Board of Legal Specialization, and he is also a Fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and holds a pre-eminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell.

He served as an adjunct professor of law at Chapman University’s School of Law in its Masters of Tax Law (LL.M.) program and now serves as a vice-chair of the California Lawyers Association’s Nonprofit Organizations Committee.

Mr. Powell lives in Orange County, California, with his husband and their bordoodles. He has two grown children. He serves as a director for the Orangewood Foundation and the Laguna Beach Rotary Club Foundation.

Admissions

  • California Bar
  • California Bar Certified Specialist, Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate Law

Education

  • Juris Doctor, Mercer University School of Law
  • Bachelors in Journalism, University of Georgia
  • Mediating Disputes, Harvard University

Professional Associations

  • Vice Chair, California Lawyers Association, Nonprofit Organizations Committee
  • Fellow, American College of Trust and Estate Counsel

Speaking Engagements

  • American Institute of CPAs
  • CalCPA Education Foundation
  • Estate Planning Council of San Gabriel
  • Estate Planning & Trust Council of Long Beach
  • Financial Planning Association of Orange County, California
  • Orange County Bar Association (Probate and Trust Section)
  • Orange County Community Foundation Nonprofit Sustainability Program
  • PFAC Annual Education Conference
  • State Bar of California, Annual Estate & Gift Tax Conference
  • State Bar of California, Annual Tax Policy Conference
  • STEP Annual Institute on Tax, Estate Planning and the Word Economy
  • UCI Foundation
  • USC Gould School of Law Tax Institute
  • The Community Foundation (Riverside, CA)

Teaching Engagements

  • Adjunct Professor of Law, Chapman University’s School of Law (2012 - 2022)

Publications

  • "The Divisible Pot Trust," Co-Author, Trusts & Estates (2022).
  • "Starting Family Governance Conversations with Your Clients," Co-Author, Trusts & Estates (2021).
  • "Focusing on a Client's Values Builds More Effective Estate Plans and Starts the Vital Communication Process Between Settlors and Their Beneficiaries," Author, Estate Planning & California Probate Reporter (2020).
  • "Five Tools for Talking About Money and Values: How to Break the Taboo," Co- Author, Trusts & Estates (2020).
  • "Understanding: An Alternative Approach to Mediation," Author, The Daily Journal (2019).
  • "Ethical Considerations" and "Marital Deduction Planning," Update Contributing Author, CEB California Estate Planning (2019).
  • "Marital Deduction: Overview and Formula Clauses," Update Contributing Author, CEB California Estate Planning (2019).
  • CEB California Will Drafting, Update Contributing Author (2019).
  • "Pre-Immigration Planning: Transfer Strategies for Non-U.S. Persons," Co-Author, Trusts & Estates (2018).
  • "Social Enterprise Comes to California," Co-Author, California Trusts and Estates Quarterly (2011).
  • "Proposed Guidance Under Treasury Regulation Section 1.509(a)-4," Co-Author, California Tax Lawyer (2010).
  • "California Bar Proposes Responsiveness Test for Charitable Trusts," Co-Author, Tax Notes Today (2010).
  • "The Generation-Skipping Transfer Tax – A Quick Guide to GSTT," Author, Journal of Accountancy (2009).
  • "Terminating or Reorganizing a Private Foundation: Getting a Client Out Isn’t as Hard as You May Think," Author, Probate & Property (2008).
  • "Would They Do It Anyway? (How to Make Sure Your Client Understands When a Private Foundation Is Right for Him and His Family—and When It Is Not)," Author, Trusts & Estates (2008).
  • "Can We Get There from Here? (California’s new civil union law)," Author, CEB Estate Planning and California Probate Reporter (2003).
  • "Navigating the New Domestic Partner Rules," Author, California Trusts and Estates Quarterly (2003).
  • "Can Distributions Be Made from Underwater Endowments?" Co-Author, Senior Consultant (2003).
  • "Planning for Clients Who Can’t Say “I Do,” Co-Author, California Trusts and Estates Quarterly (2000).

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