We represent trustees and beneficiaries in trust interpretation, administration, and enforcement. Trustees are subject to the most exacting code of conduct known to the law: the fiduciary standard. A trustee generally must:

  • Act only in the beneficiaries’ best interest
  • Manage the trust property carefully
  • Keep the trust property separate
  • Keep good records
  • Keep beneficiaries reasonably informed

The trust instrument and the Texas Trust Code may impose additional or different requirements.

We help our clients, whether trustees or beneficiaries, understand and implement or enforce those requirements. We also help new trustees interpret trust instruments, review trust assets and activities, and develop diversification, investment, insurance, and distribution plans.

Few trustees start with a working knowledge of trust administration, but all of them need one before they accept their new responsibilities. Individuals can and do serve successfully as trustees, but generally need a lawyer, a CPA, a financial advisor, and sometimes an insurance agent to help. We can help each member of the team understand and coordinate their role with others.

We charge by the hour for trust administration, including the initial interview. We recommend that applicants collate all relevant documents to bring to the initial interview, including:

  1. Settlor names
  2. Trustee names
  3. Trust instruments
  4. Beneficiary names and addresses
  5. SS-4
  6. Fiduciary income tax returns
  7. Gift or estate tax returns allocating GST exemption
  8. IRS forms and correspondence
  9. Trust funding documents (wills and probate inventories, beneficiary designations, distribution worksheets, funding agreements, deeds, transfer requests, and new account agreements)
  10. Initial trust asset descriptions and values
  11. Current trust asset descriptions and values
  12. Trust accounts of income, expenses, and distributions
  13. Trust language audit, including distribution standards
  14. Investment plan
  15. Trust insurance policies
  16. Beneficiary financial statements (current assets and current income)
  17. Projected beneficiary housing, medical, living, and other expenses
  18. Projected beneficiary assets and income

Contact Us to Begin

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