As in most things in the law the answer is: It depends.
1) Would there ever be a need for them to talk to the attorney who made up the trust? Perhaps. In defending a contest, for example, I think the trustee’s attorney would communicate with the attorney who drafted the trust. There are many other circumstances where I can envision such a communication.
2) If so, wouldn't the trust itself pay for that attorney's fees? The attorney's fees of the trustee, as well as the trustee fees themselves, are paid from the trust. Still, there may be provisions in the declaration of trust that alter this result in any particular circumstance. And, the probate court has jurisdiction in all matters concerning the affairs of the trust -- so there are circumstances where any particular beneficiary may have his share of the trust reduced because of attorney’s fees the trustee's have necessarily incurred on behalf of the trust – such as where a beneficiary files an unsuccessful petition to remove the trustee.
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Thomas A. Schaeffer, Esq. Law Office of Juarez and Schaeffer PO Box 16216, San Diego, CA 92105 (619) 804-4327 www.jslaw.org This posting is provided for "informational purposes" only and should not be relied upon as "legal advice." Nothing transmitted from this posting constitutes the establishment of an attorney-client relationship. Applicability of the legal principals discussed here may differ substantially in individual situations or in different States.
The lawyer for the trust company is the trustee's lawyer - not your lawyer. In issues involving trust administration the trust company's lawyer would be in a conflict of interest if he/she also advised you. On matters not involving the trust administration (e.g. taxes, etc.) generally the trust company lawyers are not available (they are not in private practice). If you have a good opinion about the lawyer who drafted the trust I would recommend you consult with that lawyer on all trust involved matters.
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