Skilled And Compassionate Trust Administration Services
Administering a trust is a big responsibility. The duties can feel overwhelming while you are also coping with the passing of a relative or loved one.
Fortunately, you do not have to shoulder the burdens alone. The Law Office of Penniann J. Schumann PLLC provides patient and compassionate support to trustees as they fulfill their fiduciary duties. We handle trust administration throughout Salt Lake City and Park City. As an experienced estate law attorney and a former trust officer, Ms. Schumann is well-qualified to guide you through each step and make a complex process less stressful.
We also advocate for beneficiaries who are concerned that a trust administrator is not doing their job or acting ethically.
Legal Help For Administering A Trust
A trust holds assets separate from a person’s estate for the benefit of one or more beneficiaries. The trust is overseen by an appointed administrator, also known as a trustee. There are professional trust administrators, but often the trustee is a relative or family friend who has no special training. That’s where we can help.
While probate and estate administration is a “one and done” job, trust administration may be an ongoing obligation. The duties of the trustee include:
- Managing investments of the trust
- Communicating to beneficiaries
- Making one-time distributions or periodic disbursements to beneficiaries
- Filing income tax returns
- Annual reporting and accounting
- Protecting the trust and its beneficiaries
Trust administrators are held to a high standard of fiduciary duty. They must act in the best interests of the beneficiaries. For example, you are allowed to take a fee for managing the trust, but the fee must be reasonable for the services performed.
In Trust Administration, Experience Counts
With 60-plus years of combined legal experience, our attorneys have helped numerous clients administer trusts and resolve complex issues related to estates and trusts. Penniann Schumann has an in-depth background in trust management, having served as a trust officer for a national bank, overseeing numerous trusts across Utah and Idaho. She can advise on the legal, tax and administrative aspects of investments, disbursements and other matters. She can help you interpret the language of a trust and clarify your obligations and limitations, to keep you in compliance and carry out your trustee duties as efficiently as possible.
We Advocate For Beneficiaries Too
Unfortunately, some trust administrators are not trustworthy or suited for the job. Our firm can represent beneficiaries of trusts who believe the trustee is not acting in their best interests. You may suspect the administrator is siphoning funds from the trust or self-dealing by charging excessive management fees. You may be concerned that the trustee is mismanaging investments or refusing to disburse funds. Or perhaps the trustee is unresponsive, combative or neglecting their duties.
We can step in to assert your rights and hold the trust administrator to their obligations. If the conflict cannot be resolved amicably, we will pursue legal action such as petitioning the probate court to remove the trustee or suing the trustee to recover misappropriated assets.
Schedule A Consultation About Trust Administration
We can help with the complex duties of managing a trust or intervene if a trustee has breached their fiduciary duty. To arrange an initial consultation, please call our law firm at 801-839-4891 or reach out by email.