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Rights and actions of trust beneficiaries

People can designate the distribution of their assets and property through trusts. Those who receive the trusts, or beneficiaries, are not always aware of their rights and abilities in regards to the trusts.

If a loved one left a trust for you, it is important that you understand what it entails. There are a few key rights and actions that are available to you that you will want to understand.

Rights

As a beneficiary, you have specific rights to a trust. The four most commonly known rights are:

  1. Relevant information about the trust
  2. Financial distributions
  3. Trust valuations
  4. Accountings

In short, beneficiaries have the right to know most things that affect the portion of the trust they receive. The trustee is responsible for helping the beneficiary to exercise these rights, if the person desires to do so.

Disputes

If a beneficiary is unhappy with the distribution of the trust, it may be possible to file a dispute. Others who find the distribution of the trust to be in error may file a dispute as well. In order to affect the current distribution, the filing party must show that either the trust distribution is not in accordance with the state law, or that the deceased party experienced coercion or was not in a right mind frame while enacting the current trust.

Challenges to trustees

By law, trustees have specific duties in managing a trust. Florida statute 736.0105 clearly denotes these responsibilities, and if the beneficiaries believe that the trustee is not handling the trust properly, they may challenge the trustee. If the court rules in favor of the beneficiaries, the trustee may face penalties and a new trustee may be appointed.

These are just a few factors concerning trust funds. If you are a trust beneficiary, make sure that you understand relevant Florida laws. This may help you to understand your rights and what you can expect in regards to trust distribution and management.

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