Trust Litigation


Trust litigation addresses issues such as validity of a trust; disputes involving the ownership of trust property; obtaining court instructions relating to the operation of a trust; lawsuits for removal of trustees for breach of duty, malfeasance, or self-dealing; accountings, distributions, and transfer of assets; management and interpretation; and challenging the establishment of a trust.  These issues may be closely related to matters such as financial abuse of an elder or dependent adult by a trustee, ethical issues, and the mediation and settlement of trust disputes.

Problems can occur if the person who created the trust lacks capacity or is being unduly influenced by friends or family members, if a trust is not properly established or funded, if the trust terms do not comport with the law, or if a trustee mismanages a trust to the beneficiaries’ detriment.

Robin H. Balsam P.S. has over 20 years of experience in trust administration and litigation, and assists clients who are trustees or beneficiaries of trusts with resolution of disputes, clarification of trust language, or questions about trust administration.  We can help beneficiaries with pursuit of accounting and other information from a trustee, and provide advice regarding the trust terms, the trustee’s actions, and litigation if it becomes necessary.

It is important for trustees to know their responsibilities and beneficiaries to know their rights, since new trust statutes were adopted in 2012 that have changed the reporting requirements of trustees to the beneficiaries and the court.  The firm’s partner agency, Commencement Bay Guardianship Services (“CBGS”), is a professional fiduciary agency founded in 1993.  CBGS currently acts as trustee of 52 trusts.[1]   Due in part to its close relationship with CBGS, Robin H. Balsam P.S. has experience assisting trustees with accounting and management of assets, as well as maintaining lines of communication with beneficiaries.

[1] As of June 2013.