Attorneys Stephen Korshak and Lee Karina Dani

Breach of fiduciary responsibility must be handled properly

On Behalf of | Oct 22, 2020 | Estate Administration |

One of the duties that a person has when they’re setting up their estate plan is naming a person to handle the estate after their death. The administrator of the estate has various things to do, including making sure that the bills for the estate are paid and that the assets are distributed in accordance with the decedent’s wishes.

When a person places someone over their estate, they assume that the individual will do what they are supposed to do. They likely don’t assume that there will be any issues with the person’s conduct or how they handle the estate.

Fiduciary responsibilities

The person who is the executor of your estate and those who oversee the trusts can’t use their power for any self-serving reasons. They must act in accordance with the terms of the will and trusts, and they must also follow the applicable state and federal laws that govern the estate.

Those who are heirs and beneficiaries of the estate should keep a close eye on the individuals who have a fiduciary responsibility. The fiduciaries should keep detailed records of what they do, including any movement of assets or money. This helps the heirs and beneficiaries to be sure that their loved one’s wishes are complied with and that there is nothing amiss going on with the estate.

Breaches of fiduciary responsibility

If the heirs or beneficiaries have reason to believe that the estate administrator or trustees aren’t doing what they should with the estate, they will have to look into the fiduciary’s actions a little closer. Finding out that the individual has breached their fiduciary responsibility can be shocking, but it should spur them into action.

A breach of fiduciary responsibility is a legal issue. If you have reason to think that a person who holds this responsibility in relation to a loved one’s estate hasn’t done their duties in the proper manner, you should talk to a lawyer. Legal action is possible, but it must be handled swiftly and carefully so that it works to protect the interests of the decedent and their heirs and beneficiaries.