Probate & Trust Administration

Probate and Trust Administration

Attorney Vanessa Childs routinely handles various matters in all areas of probate and post-mortem trust administration. We routinely assist clients with:

• Beneficiary notifications
• Filing of the proper probate legal pleadings with the Court
• Asset identification, inventory, and valuation
• Asset and liability allocation
• Transfer document preparation
• Distribution and termination advisement

Attorney Vanessa Childs has years of hands-on experience in dealing with the complexities relating to all estate and trust taxation matters. This includes providing advice with respect to Federal and State Estate Tax Returns, as well as the review of returns prepared by outside accountants and specialists. Our law firm provides ongoing guidance to identify, evaluate and determine proper sub-trust and beneficiary allocations and funding of assets. We routinely work with the Trustee to maximize all tax benefits and confirm distribution and funding per the terms of the Trust.

Contact an Attorney for Trust Administration

When the creator of a trust dies, the trustee has certain duties to carry out. These duties include the collection and management of the trust assets, the resolution of any debts and claims, and the filing of the necessary individual and fiduciary income tax reports and federal estate tax return if one is required. Any and all taxes due must be paid in a timely manner.

In carrying out these duties, a trustee is held to a high standard of care. For example, a trustee has the duty of impartiality and loyalty to the beneficiaries and to the trust, the duty to account, the duty to preserve the trust assets and make them productive, and the duty to abide by the terms of the trust and allocate or distribute the assets accordingly.

A trustee is prohibited from self-dealing and commingling trust and personal assets. In the event a trustee violates one or more such duties or prohibitions, even if done so unintentionally, the trustee can be held personally responsible for any loss to the trust, and, as a result, the trustee’s personal assets are subject to satisfying the loss.

Attorney Vanessa Childs is here to assist trustees in understanding and carrying out his or her duties and responsibilities in administering a trust in accordance with California state law.

In most trust administrations, the legal fees are paid by the trust, not the trustee, and in most cases, the legal fees are tax deductible.


Childs Law ~ Vanessa Childs, Esq.

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