Our firm is very experienced and knowledgeable in assisting with the orderly administrations of trusts and estates. As a firm, we rely on many different levels of talent in our office to administer estates and trusts. This can include tasks such as establishing and transferring accounts, preparing and filing accountings, coordinating with banks and brokerage firms, and dealing directly with beneficiaries.
For estate administration our client is generally the personal representative (executor), and our goal is to provide the guidance that this person needs to comply with state statutes and local court rules. Our role is to know and understand the process and help the representative navigate it efficiently.
With the increase in number of revocable living trusts, we are seeing less probate administration. In the trust administration area, our clients generally serve as the trustees, although there are times when we do represent beneficiaries. The trust administration process generally does not require court supervision and can be very efficient for families in transferring wealth. Yet, there are still administration issues that need to be resolved, even if the living trust was properly funded. For example, the trustee still needs advice paying bills, preparing and filing income and estate tax returns, and ultimately making distributions to beneficiaries. However, there are often instances where a living trust is not completely funded, which requires some probate administration. In such instances, we work with trustees and personal representatives at the same time.