California Beneficiary Rights Lawyer

Ten (10) Trust Beneficiary Rights People Don’t Know They Have:

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Being named a beneficiary of a trust entitles a person to certain rights. However, sometimes those rights are violated by trustees that fail to responsibly manage their role. In those situations, beneficiaries should immediately contact an experienced beneficiary rights lawyer to protect their interests. 

The attorneys at The Legacy Lawyers help beneficiaries exercise their rights under California probate code and trust laws by holding fiduciaries accountable to their legal duties and responsibilities.

What Are Your Beneficiary Rights in California

In general, beneficiaries have:

1.) The right to a true, complete and final copy of the trust, any written amendments thereto, and any written instructions that could impact the distribution of trust assets.

 

2.) The right to contest the trust and any of its provisions or amendments. In order to exercise this right, one may have time restrictions and encounter many complexities requiring the skill of a trust litigation attorney.

 

3.) The right to be reasonably informed about the trust and its administration. Upon reasonable request, you are entitled to a report of information about assets, liabilities, receipts and disbursements relating to the trust that are relevant to your interest.

 

4.) The right to an accounting. A sample of the accounting could include the Trustee’s written statement of receipts, disbursements, the nature and value of assets and liabilities, the Trustee’s compensation, the names of the agents hired by the Trustee, their relationship to the Trustee and their compensation.

 

5.) The right to object to an accounting and to seek judicial review and approval of any accounting you receive.

 

6.) The right to compel a Trustee to administer the trust according to its terms such as avoiding conflicts of interest, avoid self-dealing, and to secure and make trust property productive.

 

7.) The right to receive fair and impartial treatment from the Trustee.

 

8.) The right to ask a Judge to suspend the Trustee’s powers or replace him or her with a successor Trustee.

 

9.) If the Trustee has been connected with misappropriation, wrongful transfers,or other financial fiduciary irresponsible acts, you have the right to seek legal remedies against the Trustee.

 

10.) You have the right to receive timely distributions from the trust subject to the distribution clauses within the trust.

What to Look for When Hiring a Beneficiary Rights Lawyer

How does a beneficiary of a trust know when the time is right to contact a beneficiary rights lawyer? They should contact a lawyer when they suspect the trustee is not being fair.

 

Here are some examples of when past clients contacted The Legacy Lawyers to set a free beneficial rights consultation:

    • They were not receiving impartial, objective treatment from the trustee or executor. The fiduciary is bound by law to receive information about the trust or will. If the fiduciary will not follow through with this responsibility he or she is in violation of state laws. Similarly, if a fiduciary treats one beneficiary differently than other beneficiaries are treated, the fiduciary is not operating objectively. An example of this could be a beneficiary who requests to see deeds, finances, income, debts, expenses, and related items but never gets them from the fiduciary. However, the fiduciary gladly gives the information to another beneficiary. 
    • They were not able to get the full picture of the will or trust estate. Another situation that calls for legal action could be when a trustee failed to inform beneficiaries of accounting transactions in a respectably transparent fashion. The beneficiaries have no idea of the cash or other assets in the account, causing them discomfort and stress. The trustee may not be doing this out of malice, but his or her actions are still disconcerting for the beneficiary. Besides, beneficiaries are entitled to this data. A beneficiary rights lawyer can help get the accounting process back on track, and start the process for recovering lost or stolen assets.
    • They suspected the trustee was doing something illegal with the funds. Some beneficiary clients worry that the funds in a trust are being used improperly. A lawyer can petition the court to surcharge the trustee personally for wrongful conduct that resulted in a reduction of trust assets. If the fiduciary has been misappropriating funds or squadering them, he or she can be replaced by a successor trustee. Proving this often requires intervention by a beneficiary right lawyer.
    • They did not understand the trust or will document. Many beneficiaries feel uncomfortable because they do not understand lengthy or confusing beneficiary documents. In this circumstance, a beneficiary rights attorney can take away the worry. 

Of course, all trusts are unique arrangements. At Legacy Lawyers, we carefully and thoroughly evaluate all estate planning documents to interpret the language before making recommendations for our clients.

What to Expect from a Beneficiary Rights Lawyer-Client Relationship

When a beneficiary establishes an attorney-client relationship with a beneficiary rights lawyer at The Legacy Lawyers, he or she can expect a custom strategy to achieve their objectives, set by a team of 5 trust litigation attorneys. The lead attorney will examine the trust documents, accounting, reports of trustee activities and make ongoing recommendations based on the evidence at hand. We focus our efforts on making conservative suggestions, although we will not hesitate to fight for our clients’ rights, including entering into trust litigation when necessary. Additionally, we offer clients consistent, up-to-date communication with our firm so they remain knowledgeable about their cases.

 

Beneficiaries of trusts and wills should always feel comfortable and secure in their positions. This is their right under California law. If you feel that your rights as a beneficiary have been violated, please contact the Legacy Lawyers at (800) 840-1998. We welcome the opportunity to sit down with you during an initial consultation to talk about this or any other legal issue.

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