When a Professional Fiduciary is Advisable and Why

Many have never heard the term "professional fiduciary" before, but professional fiduciaries are fairly common in estate management in California today. A professional fiduciary is an uninterested party who is either appointed as personal representative of an estate by a probate court or chosen by the beneficiaries. This is in contrast to the usual method of being named by a trust or will, or having a relative appointed. While use of professional fiduciaries is never the most ideal situation, there are instances where it is highly advisable or even absolutely necessary. In most cases, a personal representative of an estate or trust will be nominated to the position by one or more of the beneficiaries.

Today in California, there are upwards of 500 professional fiduciaries who manage over six billion dollars worth of property. These individuals manage the interests of the beneficiaries of the estates. They regularly deal with individual assets worth millions of dollars. Not only do they manage money and property, but fiduciaries must also "manage" difficult family situations and unpleasant disagreements that sometimes arise in the aftermath of a loved one's passing.

Here are a few common examples of when a professional fiduciary’s services might be required:

  • The trustee of a living trust has become incapacitated and is unable to manage their affairs.
  • The designated trustee or executor has passed away, and there is no successor named.
  • The trustee has badly mismanaged the trust property or neglected his or her duties.
  • There is contention among the beneficiaries, and it has led to a situation where an uninterested party needs to step in.

Professional fiduciaries are highly trained and held to the highest codes of ethical conduct. They are familiar with both the duties of a personal representative under California law, and with how to handle disputes related to the final distribution of an estate.

If you are dealing with a difficult situation concerning the disbursement of a deceased loved one's property, you may wish to learn more about professional fiduciaries. Located in Irvine, California, and serving in and around Orange County, Mortensen & Reinheimer, PC has established a solid reputation in dealing with all aspects of estate management. For advice on whether or not a professional fiduciary is right for you contact Mortensen & Reinheimer, PC today by calling (714) 384-6053, or by filling out their online form.

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