Six Steps to Take When You Find New Assets in a Closed or Terminated Trust or Estate

As the person in charge of administering a loved one’s trust or estate, you may think that your job is done once the assets have been distributed. Unfortunately, you may face new responsibilities long after you think the trust or estate has been fully administered. For example, an asset of the estate may generate income that the estate receives after the asset was already distributed, or a previously unknown asset may be discovered. Regardless of where the new income or asset comes from, it is your responsibility to manage it.

What to Do After Receiving New Income

Once you have received new income or discovered a previously unknown asset, your next step is to manage and distribute it. Consider taking the following actions:

  1. Consult with an experienced attorney for guidance before taking any further action.
  2. Determine whether the estate is truly closed. Review the probate file at the Superior Court of California in Orange County. Was an order entered that discharged the executor in charge of administering the estate?
  3. If the estate is still open, you can reopen the estate’s bank account and make the deposit.
  4. If the estate is closed, but the bank account still exists, you may be able to deposit the check into the estate’s account.
  5. If the estate is closed and the bank account is also closed, speak with a representative of the bank to determine whether the account can be reopened without an order of the court.
  6. Review the final order for distribution. Does it contain a provision that states that any unknown assets discovered after the date of the order are to be distributed without further order of the court? If so, you may not have to reopen the estate in order to make the distribution of the money.

As the trustee of a trust or executor of an estate, your responsibilities are numerous. Fortunately, we are here to help. We invite you to view our client testimonials page today to learn more about how we have helped countless clients settle the affairs of their loved ones.

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