Trustee and Co-Trustee Problems, Disputes & Expectations!

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Co-Trustee and Trustee Problems and Disputes

What are Trustees

If you are currently a Trustee or a Co-Trustee, and both of you are equally responsible for managing the Trust, you may inherently have problems and disputes because not everyone agrees to every decision one makes.  

What is a Co-Trustee

Therefore, in terms of Trust Administration, unless the Trust was written to allow for each Trustee to make their own decisions without consent, then you cannot whatsoever. All documents from the banks, for example, will call out for both signatures.  

Trustee, Co-Trustee Problems and Disputes

 

HESS-VERDON IS YOUR #1 SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA TRUST & ESTATE LAW FIRM

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Can a co-Trustee Act Alone

So, once again, can co-Trustees act independently? No, unless the Trust explicitly states that to be the case.

Knowing this truth, hopefully, our guide can assist in making the right decision for all parties involved.

First, whether you are the Trustee or Co-Trustee, you need to stay “reasonable” throughout the estate administration process.

Trustee vs. Co-Trustee

The role of an administrator of the Trust is to administer and distribute the assets of a Trust. The prior definition is the simplest of descriptions, yet describes the essence of the fiduciary duties. As the term describes, you have a fiduciary duty to the beneficiaries, up-and-above the Trustee or Co-Trustee wants and desires. If the Co-Trustee, for example, sees the Trustee mishandling funds, it becomes a legal issue straightaway and legitimate concern.  

The concern is the following:

  1. Beneficiaries can petition the courts for the Trustee and Co-Trustee removal
  2. Beneficiaries can sue the Trustee and Co-Trustee civilly for any loss assets
  3. Beneficiaries can push if desired for criminal misappropriation of Trust funds, i.e., embezzlement.

If you have accepted the responsibility as a Successor Trustee, it behooves you to have a heart-to-heart with your co-Trustee to set the stage for a successful outcome. 

Finally, if the Beneficiaries feel there is a breach of fiduciary duty, they can petition the court to remove one or both Trustees.  

What are the pitfalls of setting up a Trust with more than one Trustee?

There is a mindset that states to “not” have more than one Trustee. For example, let’s say there are four co-Trustees, each one would have to agree on how to manage parts of the estate and should 1 disagree, the Trust Administration stops in its tracks. At this point, there is a Trustee to co-Trustee disputes, which lead to conflicts. 

Now, as a Trustor, it sounds fair to have all your children be part of the Trust Administration process, but you are setting them up for sibling rivalry. The best practice is to base your Successor Trustee against a standard of conduct they have lived, such as financial management, credit score, patience, and many other characteristics. Why? Even the best of Trustees will be challenged at some point in the Trust Administration process. Staying balanced, maintaining bookkeeping, make hard decisions, e.g., selling or buying assets, are all fundamental aspects of a Trustee.

What causes conflict between Trustee vs. Co-Trustee?

It’s quite simple, it’s the administration of the Trust assets. People see things differently, but one thing is for sure, staying compliant with the courts, staying transparent with the beneficiaries, and keeping them reasonably up-to-date is key to a success Trust Administration process. If the Trustees cannot come to a decision, one or both Trustees can petition the court.  

Having an experienced Trust Attorney who focuses on Trust Administration is highly advisable to ensure a quality outcome.

Have Your Case Reviewed Today by a Hess-Verdon Attorney
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Choosing the Right Trust Estate Litigation Lawyer is Crucial

Searching for an Orange County Trust Litigation attorney?  Hess-Verdon & Associates is one of the most knowledgable and most sophisticated trusts and estate law firm in the state of California at both the trial and appellate levels.

Our legal team of Trust Attorneys in Orange County, are well versed in estate planning, trust administration, and trust litigation.

Our viewpoint is the following:  Aggressive legal representation with a team of experts that protect you, our preferred client, with current tax and estate planning strategies.

Our litigation team has spent years acquiring extensive experience in trial preparation, strategy, and trial presentation to help you with your specific case. 

We welcome the opportunity to discuss your needs, our qualifications, staffing approaches, and rate structures with a view toward the successful resolution of Estateand trust-related matters.

Learn more about our Living Trust Attorneys.

Needing Trust Litigation? – What You Should Know!

Hess-Verdon – Best Trust Litigation Attorney

and what to consider when working with Hess-Verdon.

Your Orange County Trust Litigation Attorneys 

 

Trustee Removal

Are you a Trustee or Beneficiary where protection of the Trustors wishes are being challenged and causing family disputes?

Develop strategies on preempting a Trust dispute and discover What You Need to Know About the Trustee Removal Process

Hess Verdon has a deep bench and knows both sides of the equation to remove or suspend a Trustee or to safeguard the Trustee from a frivolous legal process. Hess-Verdon top litigators will help you stay on track!

 

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Beneficiary is attacking me

Attacked by a beneficiary who objects to how you, a Trustee, or Administrator, is handling an estate?

Prevent Trustees from Making Some Common Mistakes. 

Duties | Delays | Choices | Distributions

Timing on each one is critical to avoid litigation

Hess-Verdon has over 30 years of dealing with Beneficiary and trustee disputes. Let us review your situation. You’ll be glad you did. Contact us for a No Charge, No-Obligation Consultation.

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Contesting a Trust

 Are You Considering Contesting a Trust or the most recent amendment? Was there a capacity issue or undue influence?

Be Careful when contesting a trust and know the elements it takes to protect the trust assets. Reserve your rights before Statute of limitations happen!

Hess-Verdon works hard to resolve Trust and Estate issues and preserve the estate by minimizing costly litigation. Contact us for a No Charge, No-Obligation Consultation.

 

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Hess-Verdon Team of attorneys

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“I have been working with this firm since 1994; you can’t beat a firm like this, that is so ethical and competent.”

Dixie Fisher

Client Since 1994

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“We’ve always felt comfortable sharing our concerns with Hess-Verdon & Associates and have felt confident that the job was well done and the concerns answered.”

Malou Cole

Client Since 2006

Trust Dispute Lawyers

Trusts are very complex legal instruments.  When disputes arise based on trustee administration disagreements, a trust dispute lawyer can help mitigate possible mediation, arbitration or litigation.

What Is Trust Litigation?

Trust litigation is where a Beneficiary or Trustee or even an heir of a Trust feel their legal rights are trampled upon and need legal counsel to represent them in court. Typically the trust litigation is between the Trustee vs. the Beneficiary/heir. Many issues can arise, and mostly due to transparency, i.e., the beneficiary feels the Trustee may be self-dealing. Self-dealing is where the Trustee puts their needs and wants before the Beneficiaries. Now, the Trustee knows they have the fiduciary duty to put everyone above their self-interest first and to comply with the wishes of the Trustor. 

Now, after legal discovery, both parties will be asked to do the following:

  • Mediate
  • Arbitrate
  • Litigate

Trust litigation is by far the most costly and can drain the estate assets. If you are a Trustee and or Beneficiary, best to keep communication open at all times with proper bookkeeping.  

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Why Consider hiring Hess-Verdon trust litigation attorneys

We work efficiently to help individuals, families, fiduciaries, organization with the following:

  • Trustees
  • Beneficiaries
  • Individuals and families
  • Banks
  • Trust Companies
  • Charitable entities
  • Family Offices
  • Corporate Fiduciaries
  • Corporate Trustees
  • Business Owners

Here at Hess-Verdon, we counsel clients on various aspects of estate disputes. Such as investigating potential claims, evaluating the merits of bringing a claim, filing or defending a claim, and when necessary litigating a claim through trial or settlement.

With our expert team of trust litigators, in many instances, we can settle such proceedings without going to trial after taking into account the merits of the positions advanced by the respective parties and the tax rules applicable.  

Rest assured, the Hess-Verdon team is here to help you. Unlike some other law firms, we are a full-service firm. Handling thousands of probate and trust litigation cases helps us know exactly steps are crucial for your case.

Visit us in Fashion Island in Newport Beach. If you believe you need a team of attorneys, paralegals, and a helpful, caring staff, then read on.

Schedule an appointment today. Our specialized team is ready to assist you.

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What are some common trust disputes: 

When we meet with clients, we will discuss Trust disputes as well and how to avoid them. Our team of attorneys will cover the beneficiary perspective and Trustee(s)’ aspect and the steps for both parties.

A Person may Bring a Cause of Action for the Following Reasons:

  • Trust Contests
  • Disputes involving interpretation of sophisticated estate plans
  • Disputes in Probate Court
  • Discussions regarding Trust Administration
  • Breach of Fiduciary Duty Claims and Ethical Concerns
  • Undue Influence and Elder Financial Abuse Claims
  • Business and Asset Valuation Disputes
  • Contested Conservatorships
  • Professional negligence and breach of duty defense for fiduciaries;
  • Petitions to include omitted assets into the trust (Heggstad Petitions);
  • Probate Code § 11700 proceedings to determine inheritance rights;
  • Property and entitlement disputes;
  • Recovery of lost, excluded, and disputed property (Probate Code § 850).
  • Trust Accounting disputes
  • Kinship proceedings
  • Surviving spouse’s right of election
  • Fiduciary litigation and removal proceedings

Schedule an appointment today. Our specialized team is ready to assist you.

Call 1-888-318-4430.

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“Hess-Verdon is very professional and knowledgeable on corporate law, that can help with estate planning matters.”

Roy Trachsel

Client Since 1995

My Family is Suing me

Are you being sued by a family member over a Trust or Will?

From threats to harassment to emotional distress, many people’s knee-jerk reaction is to sue and has become increasingly common. 

There are many options to resolve a family dispute in court and out of court. 

With over 30 years, Hess-Verdon has handled Trust and Estate Lawsuits and dealing with family dynamics. Do not panic; Hess-Verdon is ready to help you today.

Contact Us Green Trustee and Co-Trustee Problems, Disputes & Expectations!

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Trustee Delaying my Inheritance

Past the reasonable “time period,” and Trustee has yet to make the required distributions?

Diagnose the stalling tactics from an uncooperative Trustee and UNCOVER Steps to Take to Get the Trustee to Distribute Your Inheritance.

Hess-Verdon, for over 30 years, has worked on both sides of the coin. Receive counsel on staying on the right side of the courts. Seeing thousands of problems facing Trustees and Beneficiaries has allowed us to assist and complete the wishes of the Trustor/Executor. Contact us for a No Charge, No-Obligation Consultation.

  

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Trustee Deadlines

Up against or even missed a deadline? Know which ones are upcoming?

Shore up your fiduciary responsibilities 

Conflict of Interest | Distribution of Funds | Upcoming deadlines

And put yourself back on track and avoid a trustee removal petition

Time is ticking, and seeking guidance from a Hess-Verdon Attorney is your attorney source to know protect your family’s legacy. Contact us for a No Charge, No-Obligation Consultation.

Contact Us Green Trustee and Co-Trustee Problems, Disputes & Expectations!

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(949) 706-7300

Changed Trust Before Death

Was a Trust changed while under the care of a brother, sister, or institution and possibly been influenced?

 Act fast and attain a strategy on resolving fraud, forgery, undue influence, while protecting your rights and staying on the right side of the court.

 Hess-Verdon & Associates helps seek proper legal advice and provides you with the sound direction you need to understand what constitutes an invalid Trust or amendment. Contact us for a No Charge, No-Obligation Consultation.

 

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We are here to help!

Emotions Can Run High in Disputes Between Family Members, Especially in Matters Involving Money.

Need a Second Opinion?

Are you feeling your attorney is not answering your questions? 

Up against a deadline | Going over Budget | Case Taking too Long 

These are just a few reasons why you need a second opinion.

Hess-Verdon has a deep bench experience and works with the courts. If you have questions that your attorney is not answering, or the litigation has taken unexpected twists and turns, Hess-Verdon has handled Trust and Estate Lawsuits for over 30 years. Do not panic; Hess-Verdon is ready to help you today.

 

Contact Us Green Trustee and Co-Trustee Problems, Disputes & Expectations!

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You found the right team. See our Successful Reviews!

stars 5 Trustee and Co-Trustee Problems, Disputes & Expectations!

Truly exceptional law firm! They provided concise, decisive legal assistance during unanticipated events during estate proceedings. They made a bad situation better. Our family will always be grateful. There is no one I would rather have than Hess-Verdon & Associates representing my family.

Wade Shannon

Client Since 2014

stars 5 Trustee and Co-Trustee Problems, Disputes & Expectations!

“Definitely a firm that will “fight to the finish.”

Frances Gruben

Client Since 2010

stars 5 Trustee and Co-Trustee Problems, Disputes & Expectations!

“Outstanding expertise and client support”

Suzanne Casey

Client Since 2018

Get In Touch

Our Trust Litigation Attorneys Fight to Protect Your Inheritance.

 

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