In the state of Ohio, there are many rules for trust administration. Ohio Revised Code Chapter 5808 sets forth general rules for trust administration and for the duties of a trustee. Trustees must always act in the best interests of beneficiaries in managing the trust, including upon the death of the trust creator- who is called a settlor.
The process of trust administration after a death has occurred can be very complicated. Those who are beneficiaries of a trust or anyone who has been named as a trustee must understand the steps to take and must follow Ohio laws carefully to ensure the seamless transfer of trust assets and the continued effective management of the trust property.
Zimmer Law Firm has extensive experience with the trust administration process. We provide guidance after a death occurs so that the law is followed and so assets within the trust are protected and used for those who were intended to benefit. Our Cincinnati trust administration lawyers can be strong advocates and guides after a death has occurred and we can take care of all of the legal issues associated with managing a trust and winding up the affairs of the deceased after a death.
Trust Administration Steps When the Settlor Passes Away
There are different types of trusts and the specific trust administration process can vary depending upon the situation. In some cases, trust property continues to be held by the trust and administered for beneficiaries who will receive assets at certain designated times or under certain conditions. In other situations, beneficiaries of the trust can take title to the property after death and can become full 100 percent owners without the bifurcation of ownership that the trust entails.
The specific trust administration process will be determined based on the type of trust the settlor created. Zimmer Law Firm understands all of the rules and requirements for effective trust administration for all different types of trusts that can be created under Ohio law.
While the process can vary, there are some common steps that trustees are generally going to need to take when a settlor has died. These steps include the following:
- Obtain a copy of the certificate of death for the settlor.
- Identify the beneficiaries of the trust.
- Provide notice of the settlor’s death to the beneficiaries of the trust.
- Inventory the assets that are owned by the trust.
- Take steps to protect the property within the trust and ensure it is being effectively managed.
- Obtain a taxpayer identification number for the trust.
- Transfer the property that is located within the trust into your name as the new trustee of the trust.
- Review the investments that the trust owns.
- Establish a system for keeping records of trust property and trust investments.
- Have assets which are owned by the trust appraised.
- Repay debts that are owed and that the trust is responsible for covering the costs of.
Not all of these steps are taken in all situations, as it will depend upon what type of trust was created, the instructions of the settlor, who was acting as the trustee prior to the death, and what happens to trust assets upon the settlor’s death.
Because the specific process of trust administration can vary depending upon all of these different factors, it can be difficult to understand the trust administration process for those without extensive knowledge of Ohio’s probate and trust laws. Getting help from a professional is an important step to ensure that you are following the laws related to administering a trust and respecting the wishes of the trust settlor.
How a Cincinnati Trust Administration Lawyer Can Help You
Trusts are created in order to protect the property of the settlor and in order to protect beneficiaries and ensure that the money or assets left to them are well-managed and easily transferred outside of the probate process. It is very important that when the settlor passes away, that trust administration occurs properly and occurs according to the requirements established by Ohio law.
A Cincinnati trust administration lawyer can provide invaluable assistance throughout the entire process of managing a trust after the settlor has passed away. To learn more and to get our help with the process, give us a call at 513.721.1513or join us for a free seminar. We provide customized legal advice tailored to your situation and we ensure that the trust assets are managed effectively and transferred as quickly as possible to beneficiaries so they can begin enjoying the legacy they were gifted with. Contact us now to get started.