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  1. #1

    Default Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    CALIFORNIA

    Trustee quit. He had billed Trust $50/hr.

    Now his attorney is emailing and calling the beneficiaries and billing $350/hr.

    Q: Can he get away with that price?

    THANKS FOR ALL THE REPLIES!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    We don't know any of the context here. I see that you've posted before, but I'm not going to search through all of your prior posts and threads to try to figure out what's going on.

    If you're talking about the trustee seeking reimbursement of legal fees, check to see if the trust permits the claim; I would expect that it does.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    Thank you for your reply,

    Q: if a trustee refuses to call or email a beneficiary, instead, his atty calls or emails is that "Legal assistance"?

    Q: when is the call or email "legal assistance"?

    Thanks In Advance for yr reply!

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    We don't have the facts.

    If you believe the charge is excessive or is not authorized, dispute the claim with the court.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    I objected to the accounting and requested sanctions for breach of fiduciary duties, etc

    The probate Judge suggested having an evidentiary hearing.
    He said we could call witnesses.

    Q: Is an evidentiary hearing common for hearings to settle accounts of trusts?

    Q: any advice for an evidentiary hearing?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    An evidentiary hearing is a way to resolve disputes. It's difficult to give any advice (beyond the obvious, such as "make sure you have your evidence and witnesses ready") without knowing any facts.

    Although as I think about it, "Hire a lawyer" might be good advice.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    It is undisputed a Trustee must provide a full accounting to a request from a beneficiary.

    Q: If that report is vague or lacking in details and the beneficiary requests clarification, does the Trusteeís attorney come into the game to address the question of additional details representing the disbursements of the Trust?

    This Trusteeís attorney seems to claim anytime I ask the Trustee a question the attorney has to answer and that means he charges a hefty fee.

    I feel if I ask a general question about the Trust, the Trustee is responsible for the answer and cannot just defer all questions to his attorney.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    It is undisputed, as in the trustee agrees that the trust doesn't have any language modifying the trustee's statutory duties?
    Quote Quoting California Probate Code, Sec. 16061.
    Except as provided in Section 16064, on reasonable requestby a beneficiary, the trustee shall provide the beneficiary with areport of information about the assets, liabilities, receipts, anddisbursements of the trust, the acts of the trustee, and theparticulars relating to the administration of the trust relevant tothe beneficiary's interest, including the terms of the trust.
    Quote Quoting California Probate Code, Sec. 16064.
    The trustee is not required to report information or account to a beneficiary in any of the following circumstances:
    (a) To the extent the trust instrument waives the report or account, except that no waiver described in subdivision (e) of Section 16062 shall be valid or enforceable. Regardless of a waiver of accounting in the trust instrument, upon a showing that it is reasonably likely that a material breach of the trust has occurred, the court may compel the trustee to report information about the trust and to account.

    (b) In the case of a beneficiary of a revocable trust, as provided in Section 15800, for the period when the trust may be revoked.

    (c) As to a beneficiary who has waived in writing the right to a report or account. A waiver of rights under this subdivision may be withdrawn in writing at any time as to the most recent account and future accounts. A waiver has no effect on the beneficiary's right to petition for a report or account pursuant to Section 17200.

    (d) Where the beneficiary and the trustee are the same person.
    If you are causing the trustee to have to consult his lawyer, and he is entitled to reimbursement of his legal fees from the trust, then... there you go. What sort of questions are you asking, or is it that he's picked up on your belief that he's misappropriating trust assets? Or is it that you've initiated proceedings with the court accusing him of misappropriating trust assets, such that it makes perfect sense for him to want to work through his lawyer?

  9. #9

    Default Re: Attorney Fees vs Trustee Fees

    ex-son-in-law assists old woman to sell her home and invest it all into investment company.

    She makes the guy sole beneficiary and gives him full authority to handle her investment money.

    Then he assists her in making new Will and a Living Trust with him as executor and Trustee.

    Q: what are the guidelines for such intimate decisions?

    p.s. the guy has turned out to be a full-on cad.

  10. #10

    Default Elder Abuse?

    A son-in-law helped his mother-in-law open an investment account with a notable company.

    The same day, she made the son-in-law the sole beneficiary of all her assets and also authorized him to have full authority over her money.

    six months later, he helped her to draw up a new Will and Trust.

    Six days later, she suddenly passed away.

    Though he had helped her draw up the new Will and Trust, he hadn't filed it with the investment company.

    Therefore he had to take the issue to the probate Court to force the investment Company to accept the Will and Trust.

    The Will nor the Trust mentioned anything about him receiving a share of her money.

    It is our (beneficiaries) thought, mother didnít even know she had signed him as her sole beneficiary.

    the Will did ask him to be the executor and Trust asked him to be Trustee.

    Q: was it elder abuse for the guy to insert himself as her sole beneficiary?

    Q: is this a type of Fraud?

    the title of the trust now reads:

    Jane Doe Living Trust U/A 01/01/10 John Doe Trustee For the Benefit of Jim Doe

    we think it should read: John Doe Trustee U/A 01/01/10 Jane Doe Living Trust For the Benefit of Jim Doe

    this might seem like nit picking but it isnt as this scoundrel is clever and difficult to catch.

    A son-in-law helped his mother-in-law open an investment account with a notable company.

    The same day, she made the son-in-law the sole beneficiary of all her assets and also authorized him to have full authority over her money.

    six months later, he helped her to draw up a new Will and Trust.

    Six days later, she suddenly passed away.

    Though he had helped her draw up the new Will and Trust, he hadn't filed it with the investment company.

    Therefore he had to take the issue to the probate Court to force the investment Company to accept the Will and Trust.

    The Will nor the Trust mentioned anything about him receiving a share of her money.

    It is our (beneficiaries) thought, mother didnít even know she had signed him as her sole beneficiary.

    the Will did ask him to be the executor and Trust asked him to be Trustee.

    Q: was it elder abuse for the guy to insert himself as her sole beneficiary?

    Q: is this a type of Fraud?

    the title of the trust now reads:

    Jane Doe Living Trust U/A 01/01/10 John Doe Trustee For the Benefit of Jim Doe

    we think it should read: John Doe Trustee U/A 01/01/10 Jane Doe Living Trust For the Benefit of Jim Doe

    this might seem like nit picking but it isnt as this scoundrel is clever and difficult to catch.

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