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#1759257 - 11/19/12 08:00 PM In Trust For?
Anonymous
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I have a fun one.

We have an attorney (John Doe) that wants to open an account titled: John Doe, In trust for the Estate of Jane Doe.

The attorney received a check that is titled this way. What paperwork would we need? The check is very substantial (over $1 million) and we need to make sure we get this right.

He currently has an indemnity agreement and that is about it...

My concern is that he would have sole control over this account, or at least this is my general understanding. I understand that he is acting in a fiduciary capacity and would be responsible for reporting/accounting for all the transactions that take place on the account, but I feel like we would need more documentation than just the check.

Anyone have any ideas??

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#1759342 - 11/19/12 10:50 PM Re: In Trust For? Anonymous
Anonymous
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??

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#1759561 - 11/20/12 06:08 PM Re: In Trust For? Anonymous
MagicCity Offline

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MagicCity
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Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Would you not want the same documents that you would get for an Estate Account?

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#1759607 - 11/20/12 07:10 PM Re: In Trust For? Anonymous
Anonymous
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Orig Anon here.

So the deal is that the family who would benefit from this estate doesn't know what to do with the money, so they are asking the attorney to hold on to it for them. Because of this, the state issued a check payable as mentioned above.

This a very complicated issue that I am finding out about after the fact. The check was already negotiated without the proper account being established. Now the attorney wants to transfer the funds from this check to an account titled in the same manner as the check, but has no documentation from the court showing that he has any authority over these funds. Should we just cut a check for the remaining funds back to the original payee (attorney in trust for) and move on? I don't see how we could open this type of account if he was not appointed by the court?

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#1759707 - 11/20/12 08:39 PM Re: In Trust For? Anonymous
1 Peter 5:7 Offline
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1 Peter 5:7
Joined: Jun 2001
Posts: 1,339
TX
Why couldn't the attorney just deposit the check into his/her IOLTA account? Then your bank would not be trying to figure out proper titling.
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#1759726 - 11/20/12 09:25 PM Re: In Trust For? Anonymous
edAudit Offline
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edAudit
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You are here
from what is given in the second Orig Anon it does not seem that the check was payable to the way the customer intended. I would tend to agree with 1 Peter; however if the check is a large amount the customer should recieve the interest on the funds. As written it does not appear that the funds belong to the estate but to John Doe.
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#1759773 - 11/20/12 10:40 PM Re: In Trust For? Anonymous
Anonymous
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Orig Anon again: Is this something that we should refer to our attorney now? The attorney handling the check doesn't seem to know what he is doing and is insisting that we open an account titled John Doe, In Trust For the Estate of Jane Doe. But I don't see how we can do this with no paperwork telling us this is allowed.

The attorney didn't want the funds in the IOLTA account for...who knows why? He wants to keep the funds separate from the IOLTA account.

We could advise him to have the Estate open an account, but I don't want to "provide legal advice", especially to a lawyer that doesn't seem to know what it is he is doing. I don't see why it wasn't done this way to begin with. If the family does't know what to do with the money they should have simply placed it in an Estate account and just held on to it for a while...

This makes my head hurt.

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#1759806 - 11/21/12 03:11 AM Re: In Trust For? Anonymous
Deputy Dawn Offline
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Deputy Dawn
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 484
Pennsylvania
In our state, that type of titling is what is used for revocable trusts, accounts withe beneficiaries. The way I would read that check is the Estate of Jane Doe is the beneficiary of John Doe. The money belongs to him, but any money remaining in the account upon his death would belong to the Estate of Jane Doe.

I haven't come across an account that lists an entity as a beneficiary, but my banking experience is only 5 years at a community bank

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#1760065 - 11/21/12 05:36 PM Re: In Trust For? Anonymous
Anonymous
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It sounds like John Doe is the attorney for the Estate, not acting as a Personal Representative/Executor. I agree with 1 Peter, the funds should be held under some lawyer trust agreement. Given the size, it would seem reasonable to keep them in a seperate account from his IOLTA so the beneficiaries of the estate can receive the interest. I have dealt with this kind of arrangement for other entities, but not specifically with an Estate. I would confirm such an arrangement is allowed in your state. Your lcoal Bar association may be of some help.

If it is, he's probably entered into some kind of agreement with the estate, and should be able to provide you with proof along those lines like an engagement letter or even a trust agreement. We would then title such an account "John Doe, Lawyer's Trust Account FBO {Client's name} We report it under the Client's TIN, and have the client certify the TIN.

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