Trusts could be set up in numerous ways with a variety of goals. In many cases, trusts are designed to reduce tax liability or preserve certain abilities. While it is important to comply with legal requirements in administering all trusts, it is especially essential to fulfill obligations in these situations to maintain the desired status and accomplish intended objectives.

A Wheaton trust administration lawyer could help with the administration of any type of trust or provide guidance to enable you to take on trust administration duties. Working with an experienced trusts and estates lawyer could provide peace of mind and help protect you from exposure to personal liability for actions taken on behalf of a trust.

Understanding Trusts

Many people in Wheaton think of a trust as some type of an account. However, a trust is actually a legal entity that may hold one or more accounts. While a trust holds and manages property through the actions of a trustee, the property is owned only for the benefit of those designated in trust documents as beneficiaries. The trustee who manages trust assets is required to act in the best interests of the beneficiaries at all times. This is known as a fiduciary duty.

Trusts may be revocable, so that they could be cancelled at any time, or irrevocable. It may be possible to change the terms of an irrevocable trust, depending on the terms under which the trust was established.

Wheaton trust administration lawyers could assist with the management of all types of trusts. One of the most popular trusts is a revocable living trust, in which the person who establishes the trust also serves as beneficiary and usually as trustee as well, so that they continue to manage and receive the benefits from their own property. This type of trust enables property to pass to alternate beneficiaries on death without the expenses and delays of probate.

Duties of a Trustee

A trustee is required to manage and invest trust assets and distribute income to beneficiaries according to the terms of the agreement creating the trust. Regardless of the specific terms, however, a trustee always has a fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of the beneficiaries. If there are numerous beneficiaries, the trustee must balance their potentially competing interests.

Because a trustee may be held liable for failing to act in a prudent manner, many people find it helpful to work closely with an experienced trust administration lawyer in Wheaton who could help with obligations such as:

  • Providing required accounting statements to beneficiaries
  • Investing and manage assets in accordance with the Prudent Investor Rule
  • Avoiding improper commingling of funds
  • Providing appropriate notice and communications to beneficiaries
  • Following trust terms
  • Evaluating and paying claims against a trust

Overall, a trust administration lawyer could help with the general duty to exercise reasonable skill, care, and caution in the management of the trust. If a conflict arises, a trust administration attorney could also provide a solid defense and work to resolve the concern with efficiency.

Consult a Knowledgeable Wheaton Trust Administration Attorney

Trusts are varied and are quite complex. If you have been assigned a role with respect a trust, it is a good idea to talk to a knowledgeable Wheaton trust administration lawyer who could explain your obligations. An attorney could take on management tasks or help you devise a plan to perform tasks in compliance with state and federal legal requirements.

If you believe a trust has been managed improperly, a trust administration lawyer could review the situation and help rectify the situation. To learn more about how a trust administration attorney could meet your needs, call now for a consultation.