Deborah DiNardo

Pierce Atwood Trusts and Estates partner Deborah DiNardo advises individuals and multiple generations of families on preserving and protecting their assets. Deborah's work includes reducing transfer taxes, both during lifetime and after death, with sophisticated planning techniques such as lifetime gifts to grantor trusts and using charitable trusts and private foundations. She advises clients regarding planning opportunities to protect significant retirement accounts from the creditors of designated beneficiaries.

Having spent many years in the trust department of a major bank, Deborah gained extensive experience in trust and estate administration. She guides executors and trustees through the maze of issues that impact fiduciaries in complex trust and estate matters such as avoiding probate, cy pres, the tax benefits of disclaimers, and the disposition of jewelry, art, and private collections.

Deborah advises individual and corporate fiduciaries, represents them in litigation, and provides legal advice on the proper and prudent fulfillment of their duties, including establishing and maintaining policies and procedures for risk management, asset management and administration, investment, diversification, conflict of interest, and dispute resolution.

Deborah also counsels business owners on succession planning, helping them address their unique situations.

She particularly enjoys helping clients with special needs trust planning for family members, as well as assisting plaintiff’s counsel with establishing special needs trusts for judgments and settlements.  

Honors & Distinctions
  • Recognized by The Best Lawyers in America® for Litigation - Trusts and Estates (2024)

  • Recognized by Rhode Island Monthly for Professional Excellence in Wills, Trusts, and Estates (2024)

  • Recipient of Providence Business News "Leaders and Achievers" Award (2024)
  • Harold Soloveitzik Professional Leadership Award, The Rhode Island Foundation (2012)
  • Rated AV® Preeminent™ by Martindale-Hubbell
Professional Activities
  • Rhode Island Bar Association Probate Bar Committee
  • American Bar Association
  • Co-author, A Practical Guide to Estate Planning in Rhode Island (2019, 2021 editions)
Civic Activities
  • President’s Council, HopeHealth
  • Board of Trustees, Our Lady of the Elms School, Akron, Ohio
  • Finance Council, Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence, Rhode Island 
  • Trustee and member, St. Luke’s Roman Catholic Church Finance Council
  • Former board member and incorporator, Hattie Ide Chaffee Home