What should I know about trust administration in California?
The administration of a trust usually begins at the time the trust is created. The trust instrument usually names someone to serve as a trustee or successor trustee to administer the trust according to its terms. The trustee’s actions are governed by a statutory framework that sets forth his or her obligations in the form of duties, the standard of care necessary to measure compliance with those duties, and the powers that enable the trustee to carry out the duties and conduct the affairs of the trust. Under both California and common law, the trustee is under a duty to administer the trust strictly by its terms. Failure to do so may render acts of the trustee non-binding. In addition to following the trusts terms, the trustee must be aware of his or her statutory duties.