Florida Trust Lawsuits + Breach of Fiduciary Duty- November 30,2016 Third DCA Opinion
There are a lot of Florida Trust Lawsuits ! What is a fiduciary duty? A fiduciary duty is the obligation to place someone else’s interests completely above one’s own interests. Usually, the fiduciary carries out this duty by faithfully and diligently managing or handling another person’s affairs. Is the trustee of a Florida trust , or the personal representative of a Palm Beach estate, subject to a fiduciary duty in favor of the beneficiaries? Yes! To read a FREE BLOG on Trust Contests, CLICK HERE. If you are involved in trust litigation, you may want to read Turkish v. Brody.
Turkish v. Brody is a November 30, 2016 Third District Court of Appeal opinion. Here, the decedent’s daughter brought an accounting action against the decedent’s son and granddaughter.The decedent’s daughter brought this action against them both as individuals and trustees, alleging breach of fiduciary duty. In this Florida trust and estates dispute, the son also brought an action against the daughter but, for the purpose of this blog, we will focus on the breach of fiduciary duty claim. (To read about REVOCABLE TRUSTS, click THIS LINK.)
Florida Trust Lawsuits Statutes
You can read the entire FLORIDA TRUST CODE by CLICKING HERE. If you don’t want to read that much, consider this. CLICK HERE to read about remedies for a BREACH OF TRUST. Anyone appointed as a personal representative of a Florida estate, for example, is subject to a fiduciary duty in favor of the estate’s beneficiaries. Similarly, probate lawyers know that anyone who serves as the trustee of an irrevocable trust has a fiduciary duty to the beneficiaries. The duty of the fiduciary is to be careful, faithful, and diligent. If a fiduciary is managing money or investments for beneficiaries, it is required to invest under the “prudent investor rule.” The fiduciary must also place the interests of beneficiaries of the estate or trust above their own personal or financial interests. This is often called the duty of loyalty.
If others were involved in any breach of trust or breach of fiduciary duty, is there a case for aiding and abetting? To read about aiding and abetting a breach of fiduciary duty, CLICK HERE.
Ask any West Palm Beach wills lawyer and they will tell you that a fiduciary is a position of great responsibility. Therefore, there is great potential legal liability. The temptation to abuse a position of trust and confidence for one’s own benefit is a great one. Were the fiduciaries in this matter negligent or reckless? Did they purposely act against the interests of the daughter, a beneficiary? Did the fiduciaries selfishly profit at the expense of beneficiaries? To read the case, click here.