Trusts

News & Analysis as of

Capacity at Issue? Consider Making a Video

When you’re preparing a will or trust for someone for whom capacity might later be raised as an issue, you have a potentially powerful tool that can help avoid later disputes: video. There’s nothing like a judge seeing a...more

Court Hears Arguments in Litigation Challenging the Constitutionality of North Carolina’s Taxation of Trusts

The Kimberly Rice Kaestner 1992 Trust (the “Trust”) originated from the Joseph Lee Rice, III Family 1992 Trust (the “JLR Trust”) created in 1992. The JLR Trust was created in New York when its initial trustee and settlor were...more

The 6 Biggest Estate Planning Mistakes

If you’re like most people, you have the best of intentions with regard to how you want your estate distributed when you die or your affairs handled should you become incapacitated. Unfortunately, without proper planning,...more

Why Creating a Basic Estate Plan is Necessary — At Any Age

At 16 you can drive a car. At 18 you can vote and serve in the military. And at 21 you can order a drink in a bar. But, when is the right time to create an estate plan? When should you create the basic documents that will...more

Family Law: Corporate and Trust Challenges to Service of Process and Jurisdiction (Updated)

The president of a corporation, manager of a limited liability company, trustee of a family trust, or principal of another business entity receives a summons in a Florida divorce case. One spouse contends the other’s control,...more

Debtor-trustees can run but they can’t hide behind the Fifth Amendment

Judgment debtors often try to use the Fifth Amendment’s privilege against self-incrimination to avoid post-judgment discovery of their assets and income. However, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri...more

In California We Trust: A Sensible Expansion Of The Voluntary Disclosure Program

Trusts administered outside California often are susceptible to not filing California income tax returns. This is because California has an atypical legal threshold for filing: trusts must file if a trustee or beneficiary...more

Still Waiting For Guidance on Material Participation

In March 2014, I commented on the US Tax Court decision in the Frank Aragona Trust case. In that case, the tax court disagreed with the Internal Revenue Service’s arguments that a trust was incapable of providing “personal...more

In the Uniform Code We Trust: Basic Provisions of Kentucky's Uniform Trust Code

Kentucky recently followed 27 other states in enacting the Uniform Trust Code ("UTC"), which went into effect on July 15th of last year. The sweeping provisions of the UTC will apply to all types of express trusts, even those...more

Best in Law: Head Off a Contest: Bolster Your No-Contest Clause

The inherent problem with safeguarding your wishes after death is that you are not here to defend them. To discourage litigation and protect your requests, most trusts contain a “no-contest” clause. The clause typically...more

The New Year is Here: Do You Have the Essential Estate Planning Documents in Place?

Essential Estate Planning Documents - Below is a list and brief overview of the documents most commonly identified as the “essential” estate planning documents. Please keep in mind that everyone’s situation is unique...more

Dead Man “Kwoking”: Estate Planning Property Transfers Can Trigger Title Insurance Nightmares

Estate planning attorneys regularly advise their clients about the tax and other advantages of transferring real property to irrevocable trusts or similar estate planning vehicles. But they may not consider the potentially...more

Protector Power To Amend Trust Upheld, But Litigants Also Raise An Interesting Accounting Issue [Florida] – Part Il

Earlier this week I wrote about a recent Florida case that upheld the ability of a trust “protector” to amend the provisions of a trust. In that posting, I alluded to an interesting trust accounting issue....more

Protector Power To Amend Trust Upheld, But Litigants Also Raise An Interesting Accounting Issue [Florida] – Part I

A recent Florida appellate court decision upholds the ability of a trust “protector” to amend the provisions of a trust. Florida Statutes Section 736.0808(e) provides that “[t]he terms of a trust may confer on a...more

Will your estate plan benefit from a trust protector?

Even though one may appoint a trustee to oversee distribution of a trust’s assets, it’s possible to go a step further by appointing a trust protector. This person will serve as an overseer of the trustee’s actions. Taking...more

When Estate Plans and Shareholder Agreements Collide

The Virginia Supreme Court recently provided a reminder of the importance for small business owners to coordinate their estate plan with a shareholder agreement or other corporation, partnership, or limited liability company...more

Insight on Estate Planning - Year End 2014

In This Issue: - Saving for college is also good for your estate plan - Will your estate plan benefit from a trust protector? - Charitable deductions: Substantiate them or lose them - Estate...more

Trustee Selection: Choose Wisely if Your Family-owned Business Will Be Held in a Trust

Let’s assume that you and your spouse are the sole owners of a very successful business. You have established an estate plan with trusts in place to utilize the estate tax exemptions of both spouses for Washington state and...more

Have You Reviewed Your Estate Plan Recently?

Estate planning has received some recent media coverage with the deaths of celebrities such as Robin Williams, James Gandolfini, and Philip Seymour Hoffman. In the case of James Gandolfini, the coverage focused on his failure...more

Brent Kern Family Trust: FCA Dismisses Appeal

In Brent Kern Family Trust v. The Queen (2014 FCA 230), the Federal Court of Appeal dismissed the taxpayer’s appeal with reasons delivered from the bench. The taxpayer had argued that the decision of Canada v. Sommerer (2012...more

NCUA Sues Deutsche Bank National Trust Co. For Allegedly Failing to Comply With RMBS Trustee Duties

The National Credit Union Administration, acting as liquidating agent for five failed credit unions, sued Deutsche Bank National Trust Company (DBNTC) for allegedly breaching its duties as trustee under the governing trust...more

Laches as a Limit on the Duty of a Trustee to Account

Doris Corya was a trustee (or co-trustee) of four trusts that failed to provide fiduciary accountings to a beneficiary otherwise entitled to receive accountings under Florida law. The failure to account went back many years –...more

Lock It Up! Maryland Secures Transportation Trust Fund

Tuesday, November 4 was a bloodbath for the Democratic Party all over the country. Even in solid blue Maryland, the voters shocked the nation’s political establishment by electing a Republican as the next Governor over the...more

T&E Litigation Newsletter - 10/2014

With the Supreme Judicial Court’s issuance of its decisions in O’Connell v. Houser, Jr. et al., 2014 Mass. LEXIS 841 (SJC-11698) (Oct. 28, 2014) and Bank of America, N.A. v. Babcock et al., 2014 Mass. LEXIS 840 (SJC-11651)...more

JPMorgan Sued Over $959 Million RMBS Trust

On October 10, the Bank of New York Mellon, suing as trustee for the J.P. Morgan Mortgage Acquisition Trust, Series 2006-WMC3 trust, filed a summons with notice in the Supreme Court for the State of New York against WMC...more

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