Trust Administration

Fort Myers Trust Administration Attorney

Trust Administration Services in Lee County

Trusts are powerful estate planning instruments that offer a wide range of benefits. A trust can help you avoid probate and facilitate swift, flexible transfers of assets, among other important functions. The trustee is the person who is legally responsible for overseeing the trust and managing its assets. Choosing who will serve as your trustee is an important decision, and it is sometimes in your best interest to select a professional.

At The Law Office of Kelly L. Fayer, P.A., we are happy to assist with the administration and management of all types of trusts. Our Fort Myers trust administration lawyer has many years of experience handling these matters and is ready to provide the personal, attentive representation you need to get peace of mind. When you appoint our attorney as your trustee, we will carefully follow all trust instructions and make every effort to protect the interests of its beneficiaries. We are also prepared to work with existing trustees who need help fulfilling their responsibilities or navigating complications.

Contact us online or call (239) 208-0189 to schedule a case evaluation with a Fort Myers trust administration lawyer at The Law Office of Kelly L. Fayer, P.A..

Types of Trusts

Trusts come in many shapes and sizes. They can also be tailored to suit your specific needs.

Revocable trusts can be modified after they are created and are often used to expedite asset distribution after death. (Assets placed in trusts are exempt from probate, so they can be transferred to the desired beneficiaries whenever the trust specifies.) When using a revocable trust, you can serve as your own trustee if you so choose. When you become incapacitated or pass away, a “successor trustee” will take over.

Irrevocable trusts cannot be modified once they are established and are typically used to achieve asset protection. You cannot serve as your own trustee for an irrevocable trust and will need to have a trustee in place from the beginning. A revocable or living trust will turn into an irrevocable trust upon the death of the trust's creator.

In both revocable and irrevocable trusts, the trustee has legal ownership of the trust’s assets. They also have a legal responsibility, called a “fiduciary duty,” to the trust’s beneficiaries. 

The Responsibilities of a Trustee

The trustee is responsible for overseeing the administration of the trust. This means they must take care to thoroughly understand and honor the trust creator’s intentions and the trust’s written instructions. 

A trustee may be given the discretion to make certain investment or management decisions when handling the trust’s assets. They are also responsible for distributing assets at the times the trust specifies.

The trustee must represent the trust estate in any legal conflicts that may emerge. A dissatisfied beneficiary may attempt to contest the legitimacy or enforceability of the trust, for example.

We encourage clients to select a trusted family member to serve as successor trustee. However, an unprepared or underqualified trustee may jeopardize trust assets, particularly if they do not have sufficient legal or financial literacy. The trustee can potentially be sued for breach of fiduciary duty if they fail to fulfill their obligations or otherwise mismanage trust assets. In these cases, our attorney may serve as your trustee if you do not have someone capable or prepared. Additionally, The Law Office of Kelly L. Fayer, P.A. can also assist successor trustees who need help administrating trust estates. Trustees are personally responsible in Florida, so it is vital you retain the services of an experienced lawyer.

What Are The Steps Involved In The Trust Administration Process?

Trust administration entails important steps to effectively manage and distribute trust assets. Below are some basics about the trust administration process:

  • Review the Trust Document: Examine the trust agreement carefully to understand the grantor's goals, asset distribution rules, and any particular instructions or requirements.
  • Gather and Inventory Trust Assets: Make a detailed list of all trust assets, including real estate, financial accounts, investments, and personal property.
  • Notify Beneficiaries and Interested Parties: Notify beneficiaries and any other parties specified in the trust document formally, or in-writing.
  • Manage and Protect Trust Assets: Safeguard and manage trust assets, including managing investments, paying bills, maintaining insurance coverage, and meeting tax obligations.
  • Address Debts and Expenses: Assess and settle outstanding debts, taxes, or expenses owed by the trust estate.
  • Record Keeping and Accounting: Keep accurate records of trust transactions, create periodic accountings, and provide beneficiaries with reports when requested.
  • Distribute Trust Assets: Distribute remaining trust assets to beneficiaries in accordance with the terms outlined in the trust document.
  • Finalize Trust Administration: To complete the process, file the relevant tax returns, obtain tax clearances, and fulfill all legal and administrative formalities.

Work closely with a trust administration attorney who can provide attentive personal service and guide you through the process. With over 25 years of experience, attorney Kelly L. Fayer has the knowledge and expertise to help you. She can help ensure compliance with legal requirements in Florida and help you navigate throug any complex issues that may arise during the process.

Need advice with trust administration? Consult a qualified Fort Myers trust administration lawyer at The Law Office of Kelly L. Fayer, P.A. for personalized guidance.

If you have been named as a trustee and have questions about your responsibilities, do not hesitate to call (239) 208-0189 or contact us online. Our Fort Myers trust administration lawyer is proud to serve clients in Bonita Springs, Cape Coral, Estero, Fort Myers, Lehigh Acres, and North Fort Myers. 

  • "I would highly recommend her for any estate, wills, and preplanning, should an unexpected incident happen. She was kind, took her time, and explained everything in lawyer ease!"
    Carol Colombo
  • "Kelly is very compassionate and professional. She honestly cares about her clients."
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    Kelly L. Fayer

    "Kelly L. Fayer received her Juris Doctor from Washington and Lee University School of Law in 1997, and established her law firm in 2006. Dedicated to serving those in need, she won The Florida Bar Pro Bono Service Award for 2019, and was 1 of 20 attorneys in the state honored at the Florida Supreme Court."

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