Your San Diego Trust Administration Lawyer
Being named the trustee of a friend or family member's trust is a big responsibility. As the name implies, it shows great trust in your integrity and abilities. However, the day-to-day work of trust administration is often more than a trustee has the time or expertise to perform. Hiring an experienced San Diego trust administration lawyer helps relieve the burden and ensures the trust is administered appropriately.
How Does a Trust Work?
A trustor creates the trust for the benefit of one or more beneficiaries. A trust typically becomes effective upon the trustor’s death. All the trust assets are then transferred to a trustee. While the trustee has control of the bank account, real estate, etc., they are required to manage these assets in a responsible way on behalf of the beneficiaries and in accordance with the terms of the trust.
What Are a Trustee's Responsibilities?
A trustee has a fiduciary duty to the trust beneficiaries, meaning they have a legal responsibility to competently manage all the assets under their control. Depending on the trust, this means marshalling assets, investing money wisely, paying taxes and other debts, keeping records, maintaining real estate, making distributions and much more. A trustee who breaches their fiduciary duty can be held liable for damages resulting from their mismanagement.
Why Choose Brierton, Jones, & Jones
Marked by Integrity
A reputation for professional excellence built up over 30 years of practice in San Diego.
Driven by Excellence
Award-winning attorneys with decades of experience resolving even the most complicated issues and cases.
One of the few San Diego firms that focuses exclusively on trust and estate matters.
Creative Problem Solving
A focus on problem solving to efficiently resolve cases.
Our clients and their families return to us generation after generation.
Our attorneys have been actively involved in the local community from the firm’s inception.
Trust Administration Terms to Know
Trustor – The person or entity who creates the trust. Also called a settlor or grantor.
Beneficiary – The person or entity for whose benefit the trust was created.
Trustee – The person or entity who holds the trust property and manages the trust for the beneficiary, according to the terms of the trust.
Principal of the Trust – Assets owned by a trust. Also called the trust corpus.
Income of the Trust – Everything earned by the principal of the trust, potentially paid out to the beneficiary.
Distribution – A transfer of ownership of assets from the trust to the beneficiaries.
Fiduciary – A person or entity that has a legal obligation to manage property for another’s benefit. A fiduciary is held to a higher standard of conduct than an ordinary person and must carry out specific fiduciary duties. Includes personal representative (executor, administrator), trustee, guardian, and conservator.
Consult a Trust Administration Lawyer
As a trustee, often the most responsible course of action is to hire an experienced attorney to administer the trust. Contact us today for a consultation.