How to Request a Detailed Accounting from the Trustee?

The beneficiaries of a trust are usually entitled to receive an accounting, whether by virtue of the terms of the trust or because it is required by applicable statute (for example, the applicable Arizona statute is found at A.R.S. § 14-7303). However, statutes and trust documents rarely specify exactly what kind of accounting is required. Even if the applicable state statute may not require a detailed accounting, an Arizona court may order such a detailed accounting as an equitable remedy. 3 Am. Jur. 2d Agency § 321 (Action for accounting or for breach of duty to account). The type of accounting is relevant because, as the saying goes, the devil is in the details and you as a beneficiary want a full disclosure of all the relevant facts to be able to protect your interests and to know if the trustee is doing a good job.

A detailed accounting might include the following:

(1) A statement of receipts and disbursements of principal and income that have occurred during the last complete fiscal year of the trust or since the last account.

(2) A statement of the assets and liabilities of the trust as of the end of the last complete fiscal year of the trust or as of the end of the period covered by the account.

(3) The trustee’s compensation for the last complete fiscal year of the trust or since the last account.

(4) The agents hired by the trustee, their relationship to the trustee, if any, and their compensation, for the last complete fiscal year of the trust or since the last account.

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Paul E. Deloughery is the founding partner at the Scottsdale law firm of Deloughery & Ruotolo, P.C. You may contact Paul at 602-443-4888 or by email at paul@delougherylaw.com. For more information, go to http://www.delougherylaw.com.

Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is made available for general informational purposes only, and is not intended to constitute specific legal advice or to be a substitute for advice from qualified counsel. For that reason, you should not act or refrain from acting based on any information in this article without first obtaining advice from professional counsel qualified in the applicable subject matter and jurisdictions.

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