Using a California Notice of Proposed Action for 7 Trustee Actions

While serving as the trustee of a California trust, you may encounter situations where you must use your discretion as to the best course of action for administering the trust. Even with the guidance of an experienced Anaheim trust attorney, whether or not to take certain actions or inactions is not always black and white. The California probate code offers trustees the option to serve a Notice of Proposed Action or Notice of Proposed Inaction to protect the trustee in these situations. 

By serving a notice prior to taking or withholding from taking a certain action, a trustee can protect himself or the trust from criticism by the beneficiaries or other interested parties. What are some activities that a Notice of Proposed Action or Inaction may be appropriate for? These activities may include:

  1. Selling or incorporating the business of the decedent.
  2. Selling real estate.
  3. Carrying out a contract to covey property that was signed by the decedent before he or she died.
  4. Mortgaging or pledging real estate.
  5. Granting an option to purchase real estate.
  6. Distributing the trust assets after the period for filing creditors' claims has ended. Examples may include furniture, cash, income, jewelry, or artwork.
  7. Executing a disclaimer on behalf of the decedent for tax or other purposes.

Once the Notice has been properly given to all necessary individuals, the trustee can take or withhold from taking the proposed action with confidence. The Notice is served using a form issued by the California probate court. Typically, a certain amount of time is given to allow the interested individuals to respond or object. After the time period has passed, the trustee can move forward.

Utilizing a Notice of Proposed Action or Inaction is just one tool available to trustees during the administration process. To learn more about working with trusts, view our free guide, Understanding the Revocable Living Trust – In Language That Anyone Can Understand in 8 Minutes. Our office of experienced Anaheim trust attorneys can provide further guidance. Call our office today at (714) 459-5481 for a consultation.

James F. Roberts
Founder and owner of the Law Office of James F. Roberts and Associates, a premiere estate planning law firm