William R. Christian

William R. Christian

In Memoriam
Los Angeles, California
213-895-4900 ex 213

We are saddened to inform you of the passing of a brilliant lawyer, our friend and colleague, William R. Christian. Bill joined Rodi Pollock Pettker Christian & Pramov as a principal in 1989. Bill worked for many years serving as a legal adviser for small businesses and individuals throughout the State of California, and had significant experience in personal estate planning, including business succession planning, entity selection and governance, planning to minimize taxes, and related areas that significantly impact individuals and small businesses.


He was known in the legal field as a tax attorney with a broad range of experience in all areas of individual, corporate, partnership, estate tax planning and tax controversy work. His practice placed particular emphasis on effective planning through entity selection, discount and liability planning, business, estate and corporate tax and business planning and individual tax planning matters. His client base included a substantial number of individuals and closely held businesses. Specific areas of extensive expertise included: estate planning, wills, trusts and gift tax planning; probate; Subchapter S, partnership and LLC taxation and structure, corporate and partnership acquisitions, sales, structure and planning; reorganizations and recapitalizations; real estate (primarily acquisitions, exchanges, leasing, risk and liability planning). Bill was the author of Subchapter S Taxation, published by Warren, Gorham & Lamont and he was a frequent lecturer in tax law.


Bill valued his relationships with his clients and with his business contacts, and derived great satisfaction from his role as a trusted advisor. In his words, "I’m a small business and individual problem solver." Although we are keenly aware that no one can replace Bill, we want you – his clients and friends – to know that this law firm, where Bill practiced since 1989, is well-equipped and fully-prepared to continue serving Bill’s clients. We believe that this is exactly what Bill would have done, and that he would expect nothing less from us.


In the area of estate planning and administration, we are fortunate to have a team comprised of attorneys Walter T. Killmer, Jr., Elizabeth B. Blakely, Dominque Y. Tauzin, Gregory T. Sidman, and one of the firm’s original founders, John D. Pettker. This group is capable of handling any estate planning or administration issue. In addition, John Pettker and Walter Killmer have extensive experience representing private foundations and other charitable organizations, and advising donors on charitable giving strategies.


For business matters, our capabilities cover everything from formation to dissolution. This includes choice of entity at formation, handling corporate formalities on a continuing basis, advising on the complete range of business transactions, mergers and acquisitions, dealing effectively with succession issues, or winding down a business. Our lawyers in this area are Henry P. Pramov, Jr., Elizabeth B.Blakely, Robert Yahiro and Robert Norton.

Areas of Practice

  • Business & Commercial Law
  • Securities Law
  • Taxation Law
  • Estate Planning
  • Real Estate Law

Certified Legal Specialties

  • Certified Public Accountant, 1971
  • Certified Specialist in Estate Planning, Trust and Probate

Bar Admissions

  • California, 1974
  • U.S. District Court Central District of California


  • University of California, Hastings College of the Law, San Francisco, California
    • J.D. - 1973
    • Honors: Order of the Coif
    • Law Journal: Hastings Law Journal, Member, 1971 - 1972
    • Law Journal: Hastings Law Journal, Associate Editor, 1972 - 1973
  • California State University, Fullerton, California
    • B.A. - 1970

Published Works

  • Subchapter S. Taxation , Shepard's McGraw-Hill, 4th Ed., 1998
  • Recent Developments in S Corporation Taxation, (Co-Author), 48th USC Ann. Instit. on Fed. Tax, Chapter 5, 1996


  • Lecturer, University of California at Los Angeles, 1979
  • Lecturer, Golden Gate University Masters in Tax Program, 1985 - 1990
  • Lecturer, CEB and AICPA programs

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Los Angeles County Bar Association, Member, Executive Committee, Section of Taxation
  • American Bar Association, Member, Subcommittee on S Corporations
  • State Bar of California, Member

Past Employment Positions

  • Hufstedler, Miller, Kaus & Beardsly, 1983 - 1990
  • Pepper, Hamilton & Scheetz, 1980 - 1983
  • Willis, Butler, Scheifly, Leydorf & Grant