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The Plain English Attorney

You know a plan is broken into a thousand-piece puzzle when the pages of the trust were taken out of the binder, put back out of order, and some pages are missing. But what happens when the “all-important” (sarcasm inserted here) Schedule A is one of those missing pages? It turns out in California that it could mean a lot IF you take the trust to court. However, there is ONE solution that would have made all of the estate problems disappear.

Missing Pages From A Trust

A Reddit post is talking about a Schedule A missing from a trust and what that means. And we’re going all over the place because there are attorneys from all these different states chiming in.

“My grandpa’s trust is only missing the schedule A section of the trust. In all reality, there was nothing probably listed on Schedule A. All his real properties were in the trust with a trustee listed. All his bank accounts had beneficiaries listed (except 2). Knowing my grandpa I think he just overlooked those bank accounts. I know they weren’t intended to be something special to be listed on Schedule A. With Schedule A missing, is the trust still valid? Since those accounts are barely over the small estate requirement in California, does it look like the state will require full probate or just an 850 petition would work? He had a pour-over will that put anything non-specific in the trust back into the trust. Everything was taken out of the trust binder and mixed up. I had to fix the order. It was messy. I’m just wondering how strongly I need to search for the Schedule A file through my grandpa’s stuff. It’s a difference between a couple of thousand for an 850 petition or $30,000 for full probate.”

Okay, that is all over the place. This gets to the main point of just keeping your records straight, keeping them in one binder, and not pulling pages out. When you are that disorganized even with the best plan if your trustee can’t find it in an easy-to-manage situation and they have to go search for stuff it is still going to be potentially a mess.

And when you’re using a revocable living trust to avoid probate, what you’re really doing is trying to avoid problems and complications. You don’t want hassles for your loved ones when you’re not here.

Reminds Me Of A Case

The case is where I had a gentlemen come in with a trust, it wasn’t one of our trusts. He starts telling me his father just died and here’s the trust, here’s the first amendment to the trust, here’s the third amendment to the trust.

Wait a minute, where’s the second amendment to the trust? Oh, I don’t know I can’t find it. For all we knew that could have disinherited people or given money here and there to others. He had to go searching for it. A couple of weeks later he found it.

He brought in a two-page amendment with a big coffee ring stain on it. Apparently, he put his coffee on it, the original amendment to the trust signed and everything, and then it ended up getting stuck to a stock prospectus. He found it in the bottom of a desk drawer. It actually didn’t do too much, but when it’s that disorganized it really did create a panic.

Listen to the entire video to hear what other attorneys say about all this along with Attorney Marsocci’s information.




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