When you are appointed as a trustee, you take on certain legal duties to the trust. Most importantly, you are obligated to place the trust interests ahead of your own. Not only do you owe a fiduciary duty to the estate, but you must also act with reasonable care in your capacity as a trustee.
When you become a trustee, you may subject yourself to personal liability to the trust. The beneficiaries have the legal ability to sue you if they suspect that you violated your duties or did not act with due care. If they win the lawsuit, you may then become personally liable to the trust.
Although a trustee does not automatically need an attorney, they are often more solid legal ground when they get the help of an experienced estate planning lawyer. As a trustee, you may want to run complex legal issues by an attorney to get their opinion because there are definite consequences for you. In other words, even if you are not legally required to have an attorney, you should certainly consider hiring one.
You also have ongoing duties with regard to the beneficiaries that you must follow. As a trustee, you may not know the proper procedures and how to observe the law. An experienced attorney can help you comply with the terms of the trust and the law.
You should certainly reach out to an attorney if you are accused of any wrongdoing or are encountering legal issues with the beneficiaries. You must protect yourself because there could be personal consequences.
Contact a Lincolnshire Estate Planning Attorney Today
The attorneys at Charles T Newland & Associates work with families on estate planning matters. We are helpful and reliable counselors that are here for you and your family. To learn more about how we can help, call us today at 847.797.9300 or contact us online.