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California Attorney for Estate Executors and Trustees

Pacoima estate and trust administration lawyer

Lawyer for Estate and Trust Administration

If you have been named as a trustee, or as the administrator or executor of an estate, you have been entrusted with important duties and responsibilities. Another person's assets are in your hands, and it is crucial that you do everything in your power to manage them well and ensure that they are used and distributed according to the person's wishes. No matter how prepared you may have been to assume your role, these responsibilities can still put you under tremendous stress and pressure.

Fortunately, you do not have to handle the pressure on your own. At the Law Office of David Schechet, we offer guidance and representation for administrators, executors, and trustees throughout the California probate process or the life of a trust. We have 35 years of legal knowledge and experience, and we can help you manage both routine matters of administration and complex disputes with creditors and beneficiaries.

Duties of Estate Representatives in California

When a person dies in California, their estate must be administered according to state probate laws. The person responsible for ensuring this happens is known as the personal representative of the estate. If you have been named as the personal representative in the decedent's will, you are considered the estate's executor. If you have been appointed as the personal representative by the court because the decedent had no will or did not name an executor, you are considered the estate's administrator.

Executors and administrators have largely the same duties and responsibilities, which must be upheld under oath. As the personal representative for an estate, you will be responsible for taking inventory and temporary possession of all property and assets belonging to the estate, as well as managing them with reasonable care while they are under your control. You are also responsible for notifying any creditors who may have claims against the estate and settling any outstanding debts, as well as identifying all beneficiaries of the estate and ensuring that assets are distributed appropriately according to the decedent's will or the intestate succession laws of California.

Duties of California Trustees

A trustee is responsible for managing a trust established by the decedent. If you have been named as a trustee, you will not have to deal with the probate process, but you still have important duties to fulfill. You are responsible for managing the trust according to the terms established by the decedent, and for using your discretion and skill to preserve and grow the assets held in trust as a reasonably prudent investor would. You also have an obligation to act in the best interests of the trust's beneficiaries, make timely distributions to them, and keep them informed of any important developments affecting the trust.

Legal Services for Trustees and Estate Representatives

As an executor, administrator, or trustee, you can often benefit from the counsel of an experienced attorney. While the decedent may have provided you with some guidance, you are often left to make many of your own decisions regarding how best to manage the assets. We can help you fulfill all of your legal obligations in a timely manner, as well as advise you to ensure that your actions fall within the scope of your authority so that you can avoid a breach of duty.

We can also represent you in any legal disputes that arise during your administration of the estate or trust. For example, we can help you resolve civil disputes with beneficiaries, creditors, and co-representatives or co-trustees. We can also defend you from liability claims for financial losses related to your management of the assets, as well as petitions for your removal on the grounds of mismanagement, neglect, fraud, or lack of capacity or qualification to fulfill your role.

Contact a California Probate and Trust Administration Lawyer

If you are unsure of how best to fulfill your role according to the decedent's wishes, or if you are facing civil action from a beneficiary or creditor, we can provide the legal representation you need. Contact us at 800-282-4731 to schedule a free consultation today. We serve estate representatives and trustees throughout California.

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