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Stephen M. Tannenbaum


Trust & Estate Litigation and Attorney-at-law
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As a partner at THEVOZ & Partners, Honolulu, Stephen uses his 30 years of experience in litigation, arbitration, mediation, and dispute relationship management to serve clients in Hawai’i and the rest of the United States and the Asia-Pacific region. He has successfully represented clients in complex commercial disputes, arbitrations, and negotiations, involving multiple jurisdictions and legal systems, including proceedings before organizations and agencies as wide ranging as the NCAA, EPA, SEC, the Hawai’i Public Utilities Commission, the Hawai’i Civil Rights Commission and the Hawai’i State Ethics Commission

Stephen is presently admitted to appear in all state courts in the State of Hawai`i and in the United States District Court for the District of Hawai`i.

He received his Juris Doctor from New York University School of Law in 1995 and have a Bachelor of Science in Economics from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, 1992.

Current specializations include contested trust, estate and probate matters, corporate dissolution, real property partition and quiet title disputes, securities and investment related litigation, partnership disputes, and an assortment of complex commercial real estate and development disputes.

Stephen is passionate about fostering strong and lasting relationships with clients, partners, and colleagues, and delivering high-quality legal services that meet their needs and expectations.

He is proud to say, "My clients often end up being good friends!"

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  • Juris Doctor, New York University School of Law – cum laude (1995)
  • Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania – magna cum laude (1992)
  • Université Libre de Bruxelles – honors (Spring Semester 1991)

  • Probate, Trusts and Estates Litigation
  • Fiduciary Breach/Trustee Litigation and Disputes
  • Complex Commercial Litigation
  • Real Property Partition Actions and Negotiations
  • Minority Shareholder Rights and Disputes and Compelled Corporate Dissolution Actions
  • Slander, Libel and Defamation
  • Arbitrations, Mediation and ADR
  • International Tax Litigation and IRS Sec. 355 Divisions
  • Tax Practice
  • State of Hawai`i
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Hawai`i
  • Hawai`i State Bar Association
  • American Bar Association
  • English
  • Case Highlight 1: Successfully Representing Former Coach of the UH Basketball Team
  • A multi-million dollar breach of contract dispute and subsequently appearing before the NCAA in his defense for extensive hearings on alleged coaching violations to achieve a highly favorable outcome, enabling him to return to NCAA top tier level coaching

  • Case Highlight 2: Successfully Representing Parents and Children Who Suffered Abuse at a Preschool
  • The facility on O`ahu and the widespread cover-up by the national organization running the school, violating state mandatory child welfare reporting requirements.

  • Case Highlight 3: Successfully Prosecuting and Defending Will and Trust Disputes in Probate Courts
  • Also in circuit courts, defending and prosecuting claims of undue influence, and, importantly, defeating “No Contest” clauses inserted into testamentary documents by perpetrators of undue influence to deprive would-be heirs or beneficiaries of their rightful inheritances.

  • Case Highlight 4: Successfully Defending a Hawaii Local-Born High Net Worth Individual
  • After proceeding with a “white knight” invitational acquisition of an iconic, missionary-founded, large local land-holding corporation on Kaua`i, against claims of insider trading in parallel actions in Hawai`i State and Federal Court.

  • Case Highlight 5: Successfully Defending Claims in an Assortment of Actions by Pre-Construction Investors/Buyers
  • In which several luxury condominiums based on claims of fraud in prospectuses and offering materials, akin to securities class actions of the same nature.

  • Case Highlight 6: Successfully Representing Minority Shareholders in Privately Held Companies
  • In order to to obtain share buy-backs through compelled corporate dissolution proceedings, as well as, negotiating a cooperative corporate dissolution and the sale of prime O`ahu real property assets of over $25 million in value.

  • Representing a Subset of Heirs to One of the Largest, Oldest, Iconic Family Ranching Operation on the Big Island of Hawai`I
  • In an intensely fought series of state and probate court litigations and arbitrations, and negotiations with the IRS, relating to an IRS Section 355 corporate division, in a series of disputes relating to the inheritance and subdivision of over 2,100 acres of Big Island real property and ranching assets

  • Member, Hawai`i State Bar Association
  • Member, American Bar Association
  • 2005

  • Discovery Skills for Legal Staff in Hawai`i
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