Trust litigation is about mending unfinished business. And, wronged beneficiaries are often the victims of the unfinished business.
Trustees have a duty to direct “the trust solely in the interest of the beneficiaries.” Trustees who shirk this duty invite legal action from harmed beneficiaries.
When trustees fail to respond to grievances, lawsuits ensue. And, lacking timely resolution, family assets can melt away in endless disputes. This is not the goal of advocacy.
In the words of Sun Tzu: “The greatest victory is that which requires no battle.” Trust & estate litigators should understand this. Trust lawsuits, at their best, are about tying up loose ends.
These loose ends stem from a variety of trustee failures, among them:
- Clinging to unproductive property;
- Favoring one beneficiary over another;
- Taking trust assets;
- Neglecting communication with beneficiaries;
- Charging excessive fees;
- Failing to account; and
- Ignoring the trust’s terms.
I’m usually brought in after the flubs. Not all trust & estate lawyers are trust litigators. Transactional lawyers and litigators may serve different goals.
It’s a bit like the difference between ER doctors and trauma surgeons. ER doctors treat all patients who come in through the ER door. They focus on stabilizing the patient. Trauma surgeons operate to save lives or prevent long-lasting damage.
Litigation should only happen when necessary. At Hackard Law we focus on trust litigation.
We operate in the courts – both civil and probate. We work to correct damage and to recover losses from wrongdoers.
Loose ends can be awful in inheritance and trust beneficiary disputes. We’re happy to see if we may help you tie up your loose ends. Our phone number is 916 313-3030. We want to hear your story.