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What Are Fiduciary Duties?

fiduciary dutiesWe accept a wide range of different business law cases, and one area of specialization is the matter of fiduciary responsibility. To provide a general definition, a fiduciary duty is a responsibility to act in the best interests of another person or entity with regard to financial decision-making. A party that has a fiduciary duty is called the fiduciary, and the party that the fiduciary is beholden to is referred to as the beneficiary or principal.

One very common type of fiduciary duty is the responsibility that a trustee has to the beneficiary of a trust. These devices are widely used in the field of estate planning. There are revocable trusts that are very commonly utilized by people with relatively simple and straightforward legacy planning concerns. More complicated objectives are often accomplished through the creation of irrevocable trusts.

Let’s look at an example of how a fiduciary could fail to adequately perform their duties. For the purposes of this hypothetical scenario, we will say that you have conveyed assets into an irrevocable trust. You want to get them out of your name so you can qualify for Medicaid to pay for nursing home care when you reach an advanced age.

Because you have to surrender incidents of ownership, you cannot act as the trustee, and you want the assets to be managed effectively by a professional. You engage a company that provides trustee services. The individual that is assigned to your account makes investments in an effort to generate income. You can continue to receive this income until and unless you apply for Medicaid.

As time goes on, you recognize the fact that the yields are not what they should be considering the extent of the assets that are in the trust. At that point, you speak with an Irvine fiduciary duty attorney. After conducting an investigation, it is found that the trustee was improperly utilizing assets in the trust.

This is a very simple example that would apply to an individual, but we handle cases that involve companies of all shapes and sizes. Directors of corporations are charged with fiduciary duties, and they can commit actions that are not in the best interests of the shareholders. Someone who is leaving a board could improperly use insider information, violate a no-compete agreement, or pilfer intellectual property or trade secrets.

These are a few different scenarios that can call for the services of an Irvine fiduciary duty attorney. There are many others, and we have the experience and the resources to effectively handle any type of fiduciary situation that you may encounter.

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If you need a business law attorney for a matter that involves a fiduciary or any other type of legal issue, we will always be standing by to provide assistance. The attorneys that comprise our team have many decades of combined experience, and our track record of success is extraordinary.

We work very hard for the well-being of our clients, and we have been recognized for the expertise that we bring to the table. When you choose Brown & Charbonneau, you are engaging top level legal representation, and you can rest assured that we will do everything possible to obtain a favorable outcome for you.

The effectiveness of our advocacy is well-documented, but we go the extra mile in other ways. It is gratifying to hear the positive feedback that we get from clients that recognize the uncommon level of responsiveness that we provide from the first point of contact onward. We endeavor to build lasting relationships based on mutual trust and respect, and this is why we are so highly regarded in Orange County and other parts of California.

Our doors are wide open if you would like to discuss any situation with an Irvine fiduciary duty attorney or a member of our staff that has expertise in another area of business law. You can send us a message to schedule a consultation appointment, and we can be reached by phone at 714-406-4420.