Peter M. Shapland

Of Counsel

F: (617) 206 9355
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Peter Shapland assists clients with all aspects of estate planning, settlement of decedents' estates and administration of family trusts and private foundations. Peter provides a full range of sophisticated income, gift and estate tax planning advice to his clients, but he is also mindful that "the tax tail should not wag the dog." That is, tax planning goals should enhance and not obscure the usually more important goal of effective management and distribution of a family's wealth among its intended beneficiaries. Peter helps his clients implement estate planning arrangements that are always as sophisticated as they need to be but no more complicated than they have to be.

Peter also advises bank trust departments and other professional fiduciaries on a broad range of estate and trust administration issues, including all related income, gift, estate and generation-skipping transfer tax matters. In addition, he has helped fiduciaries resolve difficult questions utilizing provisions of the Massachusetts Uniform Trust Code, including trust modifications and non-judicial settlement agreements.

Peter frequently serves as executor and trustee for his clients and their families. In those capacities, he advises clients on a wide variety of issues, including related income and estate tax planning matters and, more importantly, administering each trust so that it meets the unique needs of the family (or charities) intended to benefit from the trust. Peter also serves as a trustee or advisor of private foundations and has helped these clients achieve a broad variety of charitable planned-giving objectives.

Peter is an active member of both the Boston Bar Association (Trusts and Estates Section) and the Massachusetts Bar Association (Probate Section). He is past co-chair of the Boston Bar Association Trusts and Estates Section, for which he has also served as co-chair of the Trust Administration Committee. He formerly served on the Public Service Committee of the BBA. With the Massachusetts Bar Association, he has served on the Probate Section's governing council. Peter is also a member of the Boston Probate & Estate Planning Forum. He is a former chair of the firm's Trust Services and Fiduciary Compliance practice group and Trust Oversight Committee.

Peter received his B.A. cum laude from Tufts University in 1974. He earned a Masters in Public Administration (1979) and his J.D. (1983) from Northeastern University School of Law.


Education and Credentials

Northeastern University, J.D.
Northeastern University, M.P.A.
Tufts University, B.A., cum laude
Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Boston Bar Association, Trusts and Estates Section
Massachusetts Bar Association, Probate Section

Recognition and Community


No aspect of these advertisements has been approved by the highest court of any state. See Awards Methodology.

Chosen for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America (Woodward/White, Inc.) for Trusts and Estates, 2023-2024

AV Preeminent rated by Martindale-Hubbell


No aspect of these advertisements has been approved by the highest court in any state. See Awards Methodology.