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What is Trust Litigation?

What is Trust Litigation? 

Orlando, Florida, attorney L. Reed Bloodworth, Founder and CEO of Bloodworth Law has handled many trust litigation cases for clients since 2004. So, what is trust litigation?

Disputes Between Beneficiaries and Trustees 

Trust litigation involves legal disputes over a trust, between beneficiaries and trustees. 

Every Florida grantor of a trust names a trustee. A trustee is responsible for distributing and administering assets held in a trust to beneficiaries in accordance with the terms of a trust. 

Beneficiaries of a trust are those who receive assets from a trust. 

Trustee Responsibilities 

Trustees owe a legal fiduciary duty to the beneficiaries of a trust including: 

  • A duty of full disclosure
  • A duty of loyalty, and,
  • A duty of care. 

Trust Litigation Causes of Action 

Typically, trust lawsuits involve legal disputes over the administration of trusts by trustees. 

Types of causes of action brought in a trust litigation case can include: 

  • Trustee Defense: Defense of trustees accused of wrongdoing while performing trust orders, duties or responsibilities.
  • Breach of Fiduciary Duty: Defense of trustees facing claims against them, or pursuit of beneficiaries’ claims against a trustee, that improper or ineffective trust management occurred.
  • Undue Influence: Claims that improper influence over a person occurred with the intention of changing a trust in favor of another person’s or organization’s benefit.
  • Lack of Capacity: The absence of mental capacity by a grantor when a trust was created.
  • Accounting Actions: Defense of trustees accused of wrongdoing, or assisting beneficiaries petitioning the court for trust assets accounting.
  • Tortious Interference with a Testamentary Expectancy: Questionable, detrimental interference with a trust.

When a beneficiary has objections regarding the actions of a trustee, they may file a legal dispute and the trust may enter litigation. 

Likewise, a trustee accused of improprieties has the right to defend themselves in their management of a trust. 

Bloodworth Law represents trustees, and beneficiaries involved in trust disputes. 

Trust Litigation Legal Dispute Examples 

There are many different types of legal disputes that can end in trust litigation, including: 

  • A beneficiary believes they aren’t receiving a proper share of assets from the trust
  • There’s an accusation against a trustee of failure to make timely or proper distributions
  • Accusations of theft, co-mingling of funds, or self-dealing
  • Failure by a trustee to make timely or provide timely accounting
  • Claims of excessive trustee compensation

The Bloodworth Law Trust Litigation Team

The Bloodworth Law Trust Litigation team handles all stages of trust disputes and resolution from case review to pre-lawsuit resolution settlement options, through trust lawsuits.

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