Fiduciary Litigation Attorneys in Houston Protecting Your Estate
A fiduciary is someone who is legally obligated to place the interests of a person or company above their own. It’s the highest and most ethical duty a person can have, with serious legal ramifications if the power is abused.
In the case of an estate plan, a fiduciary, a trustee or executor, or an administrator, must base all of their decisions on what is best and right for the beneficiaries, even when it is in direct conflict with their personal beliefs. He or she has a duty to:
- Treat beneficiaries with care and respect
- Disclose and track information
- Justify actions related to assets, property, and the overall estate
- Act reasonably and fairly in every decision
- Be honest, open, and transparent about relevant information with beneficiaries
- Act in good faith and honesty in every decision
- Always put the beneficiaries’ interests first
When a fiduciary fails to hold up their contractual obligations related to your estate, it’s our job to hold them to a high legal standard for their actions through litigation of will contests, guardianship contests, heirship contests, removal and breach of duty actions, general civil litigation and mediation.
The Hatchett Law Firm, PLLC is prepared to handle fiduciary disputes as they arise and will make every effort to recover financial damages related to poor fiduciary management.
What is Fiduciary Responsibility?
Fiduciary responsibility is given to a person or professional entity to act in the best interest of another party. A fiduciary has legal ownership over property or assets and holds the power to make decisions for the owner and his or her estate when they are medically unable or deceased.
In context, fiduciaries are typically trustees, personal representatives like executors and administrators, attorneys-in-fact, court-appointed guardians, lawyers, and accountants. In other words, anyone that manages money, property, and assets for other people or companies has some level of fiduciary responsibility to uphold.
When it comes to assigning fiduciary responsibility, our goal is to help you put the right person in charge of your estate to begin with, which is the most important step in ensuring a successful implementation and execution.
You will name an Executor of your estate, which is one example of a fiduciary role and responsibility. This person will preserve, manage and distribute your assets after your death.
You will also name an agent or agents to whom you grant power of attorney, who will manage, preserve, and administer your financial, legal, and medical decisions and responsibilities should you become incapacitated. This is also a fiduciary role.
A fiduciary must account for, justify and document their actions and intentions openly and transparently when managing an estate plan in a fiduciary role.
If not, The Hatchett Law Firm, PLLC will defend and protect your legal rights.
What is a Fiduciary Litigation Lawyer?
When a fiduciary acts unreasonably or in a manner that does not meet the standard set for legal fiduciary responsibilities, this could be considered a breach of fiduciary duty.
Fiduciaries are entrusted with sensitive information and responsibilities, which can sometimes lead to conflicts of interest, poor money management or money-related decisions, and other actions not motivated by the original intent of the estate plan.
To prevent further harm, additional losses, or mishandling of your or your loved one’s estate, you should consider speaking with our fiduciary litigation attorneys to right the wrongs. The Hatchett Law Firm, PLLC will step in and take action through:
- Litigation involving the interpretation of a will or trust
- Removal of fiduciaries
- Guardianship changes and litigation
- Will and trust disputes
- Power of attorney disputes
- Trustee-beneficiary disputes
- Breach of duty of fiduciary duty claims
If you or a loved one are a victim of a fiduciary breach, the situation likely won’t resolve on its own or improve without legal representation. You have options available to you to prevent more damage or strain on your life or business.
The Hatchett Law Firm, PLLC will determine if you have a case and offer potential solutions in the interim to prevent further harm to your finances, business, or estate.
Why Do I Need Fiduciary Litigation?
A fiduciary must follow a strict set of rules and regulations in accordance with Texas law.
As fiduciaries are held to high professional standards, this person must follow all directives as laid out in the estate plan or trust. He or she must invest assets conservatively, maintain accurate financial records, and avoid personal interest and any decisions that result in personal gain, among other tasks.
First and foremost, we help you clearly define the roles and responsibilities of a fiduciary as part of the estate planning process to select the best person for the job.
On the other hand, when a fiduciary neglects his or her duties, abuses power, and causes a conflict or dispute, we serve as the reactive legal partner and resource you need in the moment.
Breaches of contract range from minor to serious and can cause hassle and disruption in your life and business. Examples of abuses of power might include:
- Embezzling estate funds
- Mixing estate funds with personal funds
- Refusing to comply with contractual obligations
- Causing loss or harm through a wrongful act
- Acquiring funds through fraud, deceit, or undue influence
- Failing to pay debts or fulfill financial obligations
With grit and determination, we will fight for financial compensation, recovery of losses and damages, as well as justice. Together our team of Houston fiduciary attorneys has nearly 30 years of legal insight and experience at our disposal to positively influence the outcome of your case in a number of ways.
How do I Book a Free Consultation with Your Fiduciary Litigation Lawyers?
The Hatchett Law Firm, PLLC is a compassionate, driven, and savvy team of estate planning and fiduciary litigation attorneys with detailed knowledge of estate planning, probate, and fiduciary litigation.
We have the firsthand trial and litigation expertise to back you up when there’s fiduciary wrongdoing at play, or your estate is in question.
What’s never in question, however, is where our loyalty and responsibility lie as your trusted legal partner. We can help you understand the estate planning process, minimize potential risks, and navigate the best plan and path forward for your estate, especially when litigation is needed to course-correct.
At the same time, while our job is uncovering the truth and protecting your and your family members’ rights, it’s also getting you the results you seek, such as recovering damages and seeking compensation for injustice.
If you believe something is amiss with your fiduciary, you have the right to request a full account of the management and operations of your estate. Our fiduciary litigation attorneys can review your potential case and provide feedback and a plan to move forward.
Book a free consultation with our experienced fiduciary litigation attorneys today: 281-214-6541.