Our office strives to provide flat fees for almost all of our services. This way you always know what to expect to pay and are not surprised with invoices. Our fee rates for trust administration are broken down into four levels of attorney involvement:
Consultation – $280
This is a one hour appointment with one of our attorneys to go over the basics of trust administration and provide you a Trust Settlement Checklist that you may use as a “road map” of what needs to be done. This is a starting place that allows you to determine how much of the trust settlement you would like to do on your own or if you would like to retain our firm to provide some assistance. This one hour appointment is not a continuing representation and you are under no obligation to retain the office for any further legal services.
Administrative Formalities – $1250
If you retain our firm to do the trust administrative formalities we will be sending out the legally required notices to beneficiaries and heirs (up to 4). We will also interact with the various government agencies that require notices such as the Social Security Administration, the California Medi-Cal Recovery Unit, the county tax assessor, and the county recorder. We would prepare up to two §13100 affidavits, if needed, prepare and record the Affidavit of Death of Trustee for one property, and obtain the necessary IRS tax ID number for the trust. At this level of involvement, we provide you with up to 6 months of access to office resources and an experienced staff member to help you coordinate the settlement activities and answer your questions on any parts of the administration that you don’t understand. Please note that any recording fees or other county fees are not included.
Administrative Formalities, Accounting, and Settlement Agreement – $2500
In addition to the administrative formalities listed above, at this level of involvement, we also prepare a trust settlement proposal for all beneficiaries, prepare an informal accounting for the beneficiaries, and prepare a formal trust settlement agreement with a release of liability for the trustee when the settlement concludes. At this level of involvement, we provide you with up to 12 months of access to office resources and an experienced staff member to answer your questions and help you with any parts of the administration and settlement that you don’t understand. Once again, please note that any recording fees or other county fees are not included.
Full Attorney Assisted Trust Settlement – Based on Statutory Fees
This level of representation is appropriate in a more complex trust administration or where the trustee anticipates some level of antagonism or discord amongst the beneficiaries or between the beneficiaries and the trustee. Includes all of the tasks listed above. In addition, you will have access to Attorney Williamson or Attorney Gentilini from start to finish for appointments, phone calls, emails, and any other necessary letters to beneficiaries or other attorneys. This, however, does not include any litigation services. Any litigation is separate. If litigation arises during the process, another attorney will need to be retained to handle that portion of the process. The attorneys fees are a variable based on the Probate Code Statutory Attorney Fees in the administration of an estate. The actual fees will be set by mutual agreement between our firm and the trustee will take into consideration the size, complexity, and anticipated difficulty of the administration.