More About Leighton
Leighton A. Burrey is a respected California attorney and the founder of Business Estate & Tax Attorneys, P.C. Leighton’s extensive experience is concentrated in the often-overlapping areas of estate planning, business law, and tax law. He is also a seasoned litigator who always protects the best interests of his clients, both at trial and in tough negotiations.
His Start in the Military
After earning his bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Davis, in 2001, Leighton began his career as a captain in the U.S. Marine Corps. He led the legal and personnel administration for an Assault Amphibian Battalion. He conducted and supervised command investigations in connection with the enforcement of military law. Leighton received the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal.
This service in the military sparked Leighton’s interest in the practice of law. It has also had an influence on his approach to clients.
“My priority is the client’s goals, and I try to make the process very efficient,” Leighton says.
Also during his time in the Marines, Leighton was involved in appointing the soldiers or Marines who made contact with family members after one of their loved ones passed away. “That may have led me into an estate planning practice,” he says. “It definitely gave me a different perspective on the impact of that loss and the grieving process.”
His Legal Career
After his time in the Marines, Leighton embarked on his legal career with a specific focus on estate, tax, and business law. He earned his J.D. in 2010 from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. He then went on to earn his Masters in Law (Taxation) in 2013 from Golden Gate University School of Law. This advanced taxation law degree guides Leighton in his trusts and estates practice as he addresses the complex federal and state tax issues that can arise.
Leighton interned for a federal judge and clerked for a lawyer who focused on trusts and estates. After graduating from law school, he worked as a judicial intern for the Honorable Judge Marshal Whitley at the Superior Court in Alameda County. This work gave him both practical experience and an understanding of the judges’ perspective of the various parties that come before the court.
Leighton went on to work for an international tax firm representing private clients. There, he gained extensive experience developing strategic solutions to complex tax problems. Leighton then added to his trusts and estates practice by joining a boutique law firm, where he enjoyed building more personal relationships with clients.
Today, Leighton’s integrated business, estate, and tax knowledge proves to be a valuable asset for his clients. He helps individuals and businesses gain a well-rounded perspective of the situations they are facing and develop forward-thinking solutions to problems. He offers integrated planning, administration, and litigation counseling for individuals and businesses, including:
- High-net-worth individuals
- Closely held and family businesses
- Charitable organizations
- Educational institutions
- Banks and trust companies
“I take my clients’ business personally,” he says. “I know how important it is to build a solid foundation when planning for the future. I help them consider all the possible challenges that may arise and plan for them. Beyond planning, though, I act as a strong advocate for my clients when unexpected legal issues arise. If litigation is imminent, my clients can trust that I will be by their side to fight for the best possible outcome for them.”
Outside of work, Leighton spends his time with family and friends. He is also active in the community, working with the Lafayette Rotary and the Bay Area Tax Clinic.