Post-Mortem Trust Administration
When clients build their estate plans on the foundation of a revocable trust that is properly “funded,” they avoid the expense, public record and intrusiveness of court supervision of the trust administration and their estates. In many ways they privatize what is otherwise a matter of public record. This is especially beneficial where the clients own real property in more than one state that otherwise would require multiple ancillary probate proceedings. However, the decedent’s Successor Trustee still may require counsel, and sometimes even a probate lawyer, in administering the now irrevocable trust following the grantor’s death. Lyons Sullivan is experienced in providing counsel and representation to Successor Trustees. One of the most important initial steps is for a letter to go out addressed to the beneficiaries of the wills and trusts notifying them that the trust exists, has become irrevocable with the death of the grantor, that they have a now vested interest in it and that they are entitled to certain information needed to enforce their rights. From the date such letters are mailed the beneficiaries have only four months to bring a challenge to the trust’s existence or terms.