Many people use trusts to hold their assets in so that their loved ones can avoid probate court at the time of their death; however, loved ones often end up in court challenging the actions of a trustee or the validity of the trust itself.
When trustees, beneficiaries, and even those outside of the trust challenge the validity of a trust, a lawsuit will be filed over one of the following Georgia trust litigation situations, including:
- Undue influence – this claim challenges whether the person who made the trust made his or her own decisions without being coerced by someone else.
- Mistake in execution – this claim challenges whether the trust was executed correctly under the law. If not, the trust may not be recognized.
- Lack of capacity – this claim asserts that the person making the trust did not have the mental ability to do so. In order to determine a trustor’s lack of capacity, the court will look at his or her medical records, medications, irrational conduct, and simply the aging process.
Sometimes it is not the trust itself that is questioned but the actions of a trustee. When trustees are questioned regarding implementing trusts, the following claims are often made, including:
- Breach of fiduciary duty – this type of claim challenges whether the trustee properly administered the trust (e.g., mismanaged funds, excessive fees have been taken) and assigns a surcharge action as a remedy to restore the losses.
- Removal of trustee – when a trustee has failed to uphold his or her duties and responsibilities to administer a trust, the trustee can be removed by the court.
If you need help challenging a trustee or the validity of a trust, please call a skilled Peachtree City trust litigation lawyer at Shane Smith Law for a free consultation today at 770.487.8999.