What is trust administration?
The administration of a trust involves the management and distribution of assets on behalf of beneficiaries. The person in charge of managing and distributing the trust assets is called a trustee. Trust administrations can last for months or years. A short term administration occurs when a trust directs the assets to be distributed immediately upon death. On the other hand, when a trust directs assets to be held for an extended period of time after death, you will have a long term administration. A long term administration can last for several months or years.
The administration of a trust has many moving parts which makes it important to have the advisement of an experienced attorney to ensure compliance with the law. Florida's trust code sets forth the rules and procedures for trust administrations. In addition to the trust code, the written terms of the trust, if not in conflict with the code, may provide direction to the trustees in the delegation of their duties.
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- Does a trustee need to have an attorney?
- Is the trust responsible for payment of attorney fees?
- Does a trustee have to prepare and serve accountings?
- Can a trustee be removed?
Importance of having proper legal guidance for fiduciaries and beneficiaries:
Trustees are sometimes misinformed or unaware of the many duties they are delegated to handle in an administration. Poor advisement, misinformation, or lack of information can put a trustee at risk for being sued for monetary damages for breach of fiduciary duty. Beneficiaries may also be unsure of what to expect throughout the administration or if their rights are being properly protected.
Ms. Rountree has dealt with a variety of issues that often arise during trust administrations, and she has litigated many cases between beneficiaries and fiduciaries. With her experience, she is able to offer fiduciaries valuable foresight in handling their duties in a manner that minimizes their exposure to litigation risk and to represent beneficiaries in a manner that ensures their legacy is properly managed.
The firm offers services to represent trustees in the delegation of their duties, including accounting, maintenance of trust assets, and distribution of trust assets, as well as, services to beneficiaries to monitor the administration process to ensure the trustee is properly accounting for and managing a beneficiary's inheritance.