Our Firm

Richter Trial Lawyers specialize in wills variation claims in estate litigation, division of family property in family law claims and brain injuries in personal injury claims. We received a $4 million jury award in a personal injury claim, obtained a $4 million trial decision, upheld on appeal in a family property division dispute and have multiple trial decisions in wills variation claims, all for our clients. We like to call ourselves the good firm because have obtained good, sometimes great results for clients in court, mediations and settlement.

We are not a paper tiger law firm: our business model is not to avoid court, run a mill and settle cases for pennies on the dollar. Neither did we get into estate litigation and family law because ICBC work is drying up, we have done it for years: see the estate file McBride v. Voth, 2010 BCSC 443, now cited by judges 52 times; and family file BLS v. DJS, 2019 BCSC 846, BLS v. DJS, 2021 BCSC 1311, BLS v. DJS, 2022 BCSC 764 and Sperring v. Shutiak, 2023 BCCA 54, now cited by judges 28 times.

We do not like the approach of many downtown firms. We treat our clients more like friends, they are free to call the office and speak to their lawyer, paralegal or assistant who go by their first names John, Michael, Kristina, Emma and Megan, not Mr. Richter. We regularly visit our clients’ homes when necessary for the case or the client. Our office in Kerrisdale is warm and inviting. We are not perfect about responding to emails and returning calls the same day, but we try to be.

If you want lawyers with experience and a proven track record in wills variation claims, division of family property or brain injuries, telephone us for a free consultation.


John M. Richter and his associates have conducted numerous Supreme Court trials and appeals and chambers applications. We have represented our client’s interest before all levels of court in British Columbia as well as the Supreme Court of Canada. Our experience and focus on exceptional client service enables us to provide innovative and cost-effective strategies for our clients and effectively execute those strategies.

Our Approach

At Richter Trial Lawyers we know that no case or client is the same. We take a personal approach and work closely with our clients to develop comprehensive strategies tailored to each client’s individual needs. John Richter created the firm for the purpose of providing exceptional legal advice and representation outside the confines of the traditional “downtown” firm. Our team of litigators focus on trying difficult cases and advancing their client’s interest throughout the dispute process. Where possible we engage in alternative dispute resolution strategies such as mediation or arbitration while remaining litigation ready. We encourage you to visit our Kerrisdale office and meet the team.

Personal Injury

the goodchoice for lawyers with experience in car accidents, slip and falls, brain injury, and chronic pain

Latest Blog Posts

Gender, Culture, and Wills Variation Claims – Can cultural traditions allow parents to favour sons over daughters in their wills?
October 27, 2023

Introduction Cultural traditions play a significant role in shaping family dynamics and inheritance practices across communities. For example, it’s well-known that many cultures tend to exhibit a preference for sons over daughters in various aspects of family life, including inheritance. When these traditions conflict with the principles of equality and fairness enshrined in Canadian law, […]

Welcoming Our New Articling Student!
August 31, 2023

Richter Trial Lawyers is happy to welcome our newest addition, Emma Wright, beginning September 2023. Emma will be joining us as an articling student. Emma grew up in Ottawa, ON. She started her academic journey when she moved to London, ON, where she received her B.A. with honours at Western University. Recently, she graduated with […]

What our Clients Say

In my opinion litigation should always be the last resort. Unfortunately, estate settlements are not always straight forward and amicable, For anyone who finds themselves in a position of needing legal representation for estate litigation or family law then turning to John Richter is your very best option and I highly recommend you to consider the law firm of Richter Trial Lawyers

-SB & RS

“I want to thank you for the extraordinary representation of the recent estate settlement for my dear friend. You and your associate showed great sensitivity, compassion and thoughtfulness throughout this stressful litigation. I believe you are one of the great legal minds in Vancouver, your team is second to none. Your performance as a litigator was outstanding and effective. Taking seriousness of the situation into account, I have to say it was amazing to watch your presentation in court.”


John Richter stands out because he is one of the most caring and committed lawyers in Vancouver. From the moment we met him, John was able to hear and identify the numerous complexities in our legal action, synthesize our pain and anguish into creative legal options for our consideration, and provide recommendations for responsive legal action. John offers a brilliant legal mind, steady and well researched responses, solid and consistent advice, and honourable and transparent facilitation. Clearly, I would not hesitate to recommend John.


John Richter’s firm has been taking care of our business for more than twenty years. We are all well supported through the legal process at all times; whether it is contractual matters, development of documents or litigation when necessary. We find John to be a fearless advocate and tireless worker on our behalf. His advice and support are exemplary, and his keen interest in our business and its success is a rare contribution we feel he is part of our team. John’s experience and understanding of the many and varied areas of the law make him a versatile resource, and his interest and understanding of construction law and he processes our company goes through to properly execute our business is invaluable. We know we are well supported with John Richter representing our interests.


It has been just over a year that my family law claim was successfully settled. My life had been shattered and I can honestly say that with John Richter’s legal expertise, his kind guidance, and his moral and emotional support, I was able to positively get through the most difficult time in my life. John’s knowledge and years of experience led to a solution in which I was able to retain my dignity and my financial stability. It was these two things that were most important to me and that John fought so hard to achieve. Thanks to John Richter and his team I have been able to continue living a secure and happy life.


Firstly I was very impressed how John and his team handled our business at a distance of some 5000 miles with an 8 hour time zone difference. Without his support I would never have achieved the settlement that we due to me following my mother’s death. The process was conducted professionally and promptly.  I was never left without an answer.John convinced me to push on when I was ready to give up and he succeeded in substantially improving the offer from the other party. A job well done.


Richter Trial Lawyers acted on my behalf in a complex estate litigation. John Richter’s exemplary case preparations, strategic and critical thinking and tenacity resulted in a very successful outcome. His approach was highly effective and he was considerate of taking my personal views into account. I would highly recommend his firm.


John Richter and Kaila Dotten assisted our family in a re-possession matter which became more complicated as time passed. We were represented very professionally, appreciated their down to earth manner throughout, and were fully satisfied with the result. We’re very pleased to recommend their team.


Richter Trial Lawyers is an established premier law firm in Kerrisdale, on Vancouver’s Westside. I highly recommend it to anyone seeking expert legal counsel in either Family law or Estate law. John Richter and his associate, Kaila Dotten, were meticulous in handling my Separation Agreement and subsequent divorce. Further, and concurrent with the divorce, I relied on John Richter’s opinion in a complicated Estate matter. Inside this friendly, contemporary legal office, I felt confident and at ease especially with their courteous, administrative staff. In trying circumstances, Richter Trial Lawyers is a good place to be.

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