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Probate and Estate Litigation Blog

Trust litigation ensues for Minnesota family

Minnesota residents generally want to ensure that their families are happy and taken care of. This holds true even after a person passes away. People don't want to leave their families with a burden or a massive legal headache. In order to avoid these issues, people can use different estate planning tools to make sure their families are taken care following their death. With proper estate planning people can also make sure their final wishes are respected after they pass.

One estate planning tool is a revocable trust. A revocable trust allows people to put assets into the trust. The income from those assets is then given to the person who set up the trust during their lifetime. Following the person's death, the assets are given to the beneficiaries of the trust by the trustee. At least, that's how it is supposed to work.

In one Minnesota case, the beneficiaries of a wealthy man's revocable trust are suing the trustee. According to reports, the trust was worth around $11 million at one point. However, following the man's death the trustee never distributed assets to the family. It appears as if the assets no longer exist.

To avoid trust litigation issues like this, experts suggest that people are careful when they pick a trustee. A trustee has an important job. Trust administration issues can easily arise when the trustee is not trustworthy or is not qualified to handle the legal and financial aspects of the trust. Furthermore, experts suggest assigning co-trustees. This way no one person has too much power of the trust. This can help reduce the risk of fraud and avoid trust litigation.

With proper planning trusts can be an important option for Minnesota residents to consider. However, people need to understand the legal requirements when choosing this option.

Source: SC Times, "Our View: Lawsuit highlights trust in financial dealings," May 28, 2014

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