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Frank James Danzo III
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Frank Danzo’s Answers

21 total

  • What information should a remainder beneficiary (remainderman) have before a receipt and release is signed?

    When a trust beneficiary dies and the trust assets are to be distributed to the remainder beneficiary, what information does the remainder beneficiary have a right to have before he or she signs a receipt and release. For instance, if the remaind...

    Frank’s Answer

    There are multiple answers. You can sign a receipt and release for a distribution to acknowledge that you got that amount. That does not necessarily require all of the information.

    However, before signing a Final Receipt and Release as a remainder beneficiary, I would want a full inventory of all assets, and a full accounting of all expenses and distributions. It should not be difficult to complete, and is usually required by the trust document and/or most state laws. This would include a specific detail of each distribution (to whom, for what and the amount and date). Bank statements and check numbers are a good starting point, but not sufficient to know if those distributions are proper.

    In Colorado, we usually send the Final Accounting with the Final R&R to each beneficiary. That way they can know that their distribution amount is correct. As the remainder beneficiary, I would want details of all of those things.

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  • Explain the process please for removing a trustee

    What's involved in removing a trustee. Has anyone been involved in removing a trustee and how did it go? Is it one hearing or many hearings. If the trustee has all the bank statements and brokerage statements how does the challenger/plain...

    Frank’s Answer

    Removing a Trustee is a very serious matter, and it is not easy to do. You must prove the Trustee is unfit to continue for some (or many) reasons. This can require one hearing or many, depending on the facts, and how hard the Trustee fights.

    The trust document and the law in the state where the Trust is sited will determine the procedure for challenging the Trustee. This will include how to get the information necessary to do the challenge. Usually it is the beneficiary doing the challenge, and beneficiaries do have the right to much of the information you outlined.

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  • How can i name an executor if the last will was done outside US?

    According to the last will done outside US i am the heir of all the dead person assets. He was not a US citizen but have bank accounts there. When i arrive to the apartment in europe a lot of stuff was stolen including documents and computer. I kn...

    Frank’s Answer

    Unless you are the beneficiary of the POD accounts, or the executor of the Estate here in the US, the banks are not going to violate privacy laws and give you information. If you can produce the Will in Texas, you can probably get appointed to be the executor, which would then give you access to all information regarding the decedent. That said, it may be more expensive to get appointed in Texas than the accounts are worth. But that is where I would start.

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  • A question for trust litigators?

    Has anyone ever been engaged to remove a trustee? Did venue decide where the action was brought. If the trust was created in New York state by a New York settlor and the trust is being settled/ended in New York state in the surrogate court, wher...

    Frank’s Answer

    Yes. Attorneys are often engaged to remove a Trustee. It is not always successful, but it does happen.

    Usually the action must be brought where the Trust or Trustee reside, although this can vary by state law.

    It sounds like all arrows point to NY state in this case. Unless there is some plausible tie to another jurisdiction, NY state is the proper venue.

    At least in Colorado, the Trust must be officially registered in some county, which then become the "official" situs for the Trust. That is where the action must occur. The Trustees can choose which situs they want, but they cannot have more than one. But the terms of the Trust and state law in NY will apply in this case.

    Sounds like you need a Trust and Estate attorney right now.

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  • Can i use california affidavit for small estate when Mom passed in Oregon?

    Mom spent her final year in an assisted living facility in Oregon, but all her financial institutions are here in California. The bank is not requiring that I file with the court, but merely have it notorized. There is very little money, and no will.

    Frank’s Answer

    Ultimately this will depend on whether you feel comfortable swearing to what is in the sworn affidavit you refer to in your question. You have arguments to use a CA affidavit (the assets are personal accounts of small value in CA). But whether mom was domiciled in Oregon and what the affidavit requires you to swear to will determine the answer. You should read it very carefully and unless you feel 100% comfortable doing it, you should consult with an Estate and Trust attorney in either Oregon or California to determine if you can proceed.

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  • Can she fight?

    I live in Missouri. Back in May I was tricked in signing a guardianship. She does not let me talk or see my daughter. Since then I hired an attorney to overturn it. She told my daughters dad that she was moving. And that she will get full custody...

    Frank’s Answer

    This is complicated. I am not sure what "tricked" means. Nor is it clear if your parental rights were terminated. Nor is it clear if you have any custodial rights. However, if she is going to get full custody later then she may not have full custody now. Anyone can fight anyone about anything, so yes she can fight you. But you can go over this with your attorney and certainly try to get back some rights as well. You need to get with your attorney and get moving on this as quickly as possible.

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  • Can I keep the brother, a co-trustee, from moving in this Thurs?

    The Co-trustee lost everything except this house in the trust. I am married to the other trustee. Can I keep the brother, a co-trustee, from moving in with us? Do I have any rights. I make all the mortgage payments and keep up the property.

    Frank’s Answer

    Although the brother probably does have some rights to the property as a beneficiary, your husband has rights as well (assuming you are 50/50 beneficiaries and co-trustees). That said, this is something you will have to work out with the brother. Absent a specific agreement, or language in the trust allowing it, you have no more right to live in the house than he does. Your payments of the mortgage and upkeep give you an argument, but he can also argue that you are just entitled to be reimbursed as Trustee. I would recommend you see an Estate and Trust attorney as soon as possible to get a very clear pictures of the rights you do have before this turns ugly.

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  • Can the co-trustee move into the house in the trust when I am making all the payments?

    The Co-trustee lost everything except this house in the trust. I am married to the other trustee. Can I keep the brother, a co-trustee, from moving in with us? Do I have any rights. I make all the mortgage payments and keep up the property.

    Frank’s Answer

    Although the brother probably does have some rights to the property as a beneficiary, your husband has rights as well (assuming you are 50/50 beneficiaries and co-trustees). That said, this is something you will have to work out with the brother. Absent a specific agreement, or language in the trust allowing it, you have no more right to live in the house than he does. Your payments of the mortgage and upkeep give you an argument, but he can also argue that you are just entitled to be reimbursed as Trustee. I would recommend you see an Estate and Trust attorney as soon as possible to get a very clear pictures of the rights you do have before this turns ugly.

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  • I was care giver for mom and dad. At dads death mom went with sister. Sis wants compinsation from family trust .

    On moms death we will be co trusties and split what is left of trust. Moms mental capacity was grately deminished 3 years ago at dads death. what is the law on this.

    Frank’s Answer

    Many states, and the federal government, consider family care to be done out of love and affection, and it is often not entitled to money compensation absent a specific written agreement to the contrary. Unless there is such a written agreement, she may not be legally entitled to such compensation.

    That said, if your sister really did provide alot of care to mom, you may wish to allow her some compensation in the interests of family harmony. Being a family caregiver is a very strenuous job, and the costs of having a stranger provide such care are often enormous in both emotional and monetary costs. If a family member did provide such care, it would be a nice gesture to say thanks for that.

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  • Mother's trust - California resident - passed 30 days ago

    I am the successor trustee of my mother's trust. I have been working diligently to liquidate the estate. I have several siblings. Most are very comfortable with my progress, however, there is one that is asking for a copy of the insurance polic...

    Frank’s Answer

    While you do need to be sure to comply with California law, most trusts and the trust law of most states allow you to provide information as requested under certain time contstraints. For example, in Colorado, you provide a copy of the trust to an interested party (such as a beneficiary) upon request. You provide an Inventory within 90 days, upon request. You provide an accounting on an annual basis. I would probably consult with a California Trust and Estates attorney to make sure you don't take any missteps along the way. It is usually worth the small expense to avoid mistakes that can lead to bigger problems later. But at a minimum providing good communication will often head off larger legal problems later.

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