If you've met with an attorney to draft a will or set up an estate, then you're probably familiar with them asking you if the wishes that you've expressed are being made of your own free will. The reason that they ask this is to make sure that you're not under someone else's "undue influence".
When a person passes away, their estate directives may come as a shock to their loved ones. Perhaps the person spoke for most of their life about leaving their estate to a particular charity, but instead left it to one of their carers that they had known in their final months.
Trusts are useful tools for people to distribute assets after they pass away. The trusts holds the assets, which are managed by a trustee. For the most part, there isn't much that can be done when heirs don't agree with the terms of the trust; however, there are some situations that might require legal action. We are here to help you determine whether you have any recourse if you feel that the trust isn't what it is supposed to be. If you do have options, we can help you exercise those.
When a person passes away, going over the estate plan is something that some heir and beneficiaries look forward to. In some cases, the decedent includes beneficiaries besides relatives. This might lead to some problems because the family members might question the inclusion of entities like charities. Trust litigation might come up at this point. We know that most charities don't want to have to battle for the assets they are supposed to receive when a donor passes away, but we are here to help them do this.
A person who is creating an estate plan will sometimes include trusts in that plan. This is a fairly straightforward process that makes it easier for the estate to transfer the assets to the beneficiary when the creator passes away. While this usually occurs without any issues, there are times when the person or entity who should receive the trust's assets will have to fight for them. We know that this isn't what you planned to do when the creator passed away, but we are here to help you through the process.
A person who is creating an estate plan will often use trusts as a way to move assets around. These are established with a specific purpose in mind and must be handled in a specific manner. While these are usually foolproof, there are times when a trust litigation matter might come up. We can help you learn more about these matters and what options you have for handling them.
Trust litigation may erupt when the rights to a trust are not clear. An individual or a company, for example, could find that the language of the trust is ambiguous to the degree that its intentions are unclear -- or because one party is doggedly intent on interpreting the trust in an inappropriate manner.
A trustee is required to do three primary things, which include managing, distributing and filing taxes on the assets contained within the trust. When these obligations will kick in is largely contingent upon the type of trust that its owner has set up. There are other responsibilities that trustees are legally mandated to carry out though. If they're unable to do so, then they should allow someone else to be appointed who can.
Your estate plan is not something you can create, dot the I's and cross the T's, then put it in a drawer and forget about. In fact, trusts and estate plans should be reviewed every several years -- or preferably on an annual basis -- to ensure that they perfectly reflect the wishes and needs of the people they affect.
As a not-for-profit business or charitable organization, you depend largely on the generosity of donors. Donations can take many forms. Some people like to give monthly gifts, while others will give a lump sum in December to help with their tax liability. Still others choose to leave behind a portion of their assets in their last will to charities that they support.