George O. Peterson, ESQ.

George O. Peterson, ESQ.



(703) 225-3622
  • University of Virginia School of Law, J.D., 1999
  • Georgetown University, A.B., cum laude, 1996
  • United States Supreme Court
  • Virginia State Bar
  • District of Columbia Bar
  • Maryland State Bar
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of Virginia
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court for Maryland

George O. Peterson concentrates his practice on complex civil litigation, to include all aspects of trust and estate litigation and business litigation.  

Prior to founding Peterson Saylor, P.L.C., George was a partner in the 9th largest firm in Virginia and developed a reputation as a strong advocate for his clients in court and in negotiations.  George began his career specializing in professional malpractice defense and particularly in legal malpractice defense where he gained wide exposure to various aspects of the law.  Through that foundational experience, George developed a strong interest in representing parties in trusts and estates disputes and business disputes.

Examples of Recent Case Results

The results we have achieved depend upon a variety of factors unique to each matter, and because each matter is different, our past results cannot predict or guarantee a similar result in the future.

  • Won reversal by the Virginia Supreme Court in favor of federal law preempting state law and defended decision in a 9-0 victory before the United States Supreme Court.
  • Awarded all compensatory damages in the amount of $543,000.00, punitive damages of $500,000.00, and substantial attorney’s fees and costs in an undue influence and fraud action against an Executor of an Estate.
  • Jury verdict for all compensatory damages of $779,665.00 and punitive damages of $250,000.00 against a shareholder who used corporate funds for personal expenditures.
  • Obtained an eight figure settlement related to the value of a business interest passing from an inter-generational trust.
  • Obtained a nearly $2,000,000.00 settlement involving a grantor trust’s inappropriate exercise of her swap power to pull valuable assets from a trust in exchange for cash based upon significant valuation discounts.
  • Successfully defended a challenge to a trust document made by the child of the settlor.
  • Judgment in excess of $700,000 against fiduciary arising from claims of conversion, breach of fiduciary duty, and aiding and abetting breach of fiduciary duty.
  • Summary Judgment on devise of real property under ambiguous will.
  • Judgment for compensatory damages in the amount of $410,000 and punitive damages in the amount of $350,000 against a fiduciary for breaches of fiduciary duty.
  • Won summary judgment in bankruptcy adversary proceeding on an $8 million fraud claim brought by debtor against creditor.
  • Represented trustee and beneficiary in multi-million dollar dispute with co-trustee related to family dynasty trust and negotiated favorable resolution.
  • Represented closely held corporation in setting aside $7,000,000 salary continuation agreement with removed officer and negotiated near seven figure settlement with former attorney representing corporation for involvement in salary continuation agreement.

Reported Cases

Hillman v. Maretta, 133 S. Ct. 1943, 186 L. Ed. 2d 43 (2013); affirming 9-0 Maretta v. Hillman, 283 Va. 34, 722 S.E.2d 32 (2012) (federal preemption of state law)

Metropolitan Life Insurance Company v. Gorman-Hubka, 159 F. Supp.3d 668 (E.D. Va. 2016) (interpleader action involving insurance proceeds)

Oliver v. Hines, 965 F. Supp.2d 708 (E.D. Va. 2013) (successful defense of trust instrument that largely disinherited settlor’s daughter)

Dean v. Morris, 287 Va. 531 (2014) (reversal of a contract-to-make-a-will case)

Protestant Episcopal Church In Diocese of Virginia v. Truro Church, 280 Va. 6, 694 S.E.2d 555 (2010) (church property dispute)


  • Rated “AV” Preeminent by his peers thorough Martindale-Hubble.
  • Recognized by “The Best Lawyers in America” in the field of Trusts & Estates Litigation from 2015 through 2020.
  • Recognized as a “Super Lawyer” in the field of Trusts & Estates Litigation by Super Lawyers Magazine from 2014 through 2020.
  • Named to the “Top 100” of the 2018 Virginia Super Lawyers List
  • Recognized by Washingtonian Magazine as one of the 800 Top Lawyers in the Washington, D.C. area in the November 2007 in the category of “I’ve Been Sued …. Here are the defense attorneys that Washington’s plaintiff lawyers privately say they least like to see.”
  • Virginia Business Magazine’s Legal Elite in the category of Young Lawyer (Under 40) for 2008 and 2009.
  • Recognized as a “Top Lawyer” by Northern Virginia Magazine in the field of Estate Litigation in 2011 and again in 2013.