Code Section Group

Probate Code - PROB

DIVISION 9. TRUST LAW [15000 - 19530]

  ( Division 9 enacted by Stats. 1990, Ch. 79. )

PART 4. TRUST ADMINISTRATION [16000 - 16504]

  ( Part 4 enacted by Stats. 1990, Ch. 79. )

CHAPTER 1. Duties of Trustees [16000 - 16105]

  ( Chapter 1 enacted by Stats. 1990, Ch. 79. )

ARTICLE 3. Trustee’s Duty to Report Information and Account to Beneficiaries [16060 - 16069]
  ( Article 3 enacted by Stats. 1990, Ch. 79. )

16060.
  

The trustee has a duty to keep the beneficiaries of the trust reasonably informed of the trust and its administration.

(Enacted by Stats. 1990, Ch. 79.)

16060.5.
  

As used in this article, “terms of the trust” means the written trust instrument of an irrevocable trust or those provisions of a written trust instrument in effect at the settlor’s death that describe or affect that portion of a trust that has become irrevocable at the death of the settlor. In addition, “terms of the trust” includes, but is not limited to, signatures, amendments, disclaimers, and any directions or instructions to the trustee that affect the disposition of the trust. “Terms of the trust” does not include documents which were intended to affect disposition only while the trust was revocable. If a trust has been completely restated, “terms of the trust” does not include trust instruments or amendments which are superseded by the last restatement before the settlor’s death, but it does include amendments executed after the restatement. “Terms of the trust” also includes any document irrevocably exercising a power of appointment over the trust or over any portion of the trust which has become irrevocable.

(Amended by Stats. 2000, Ch. 34, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2001.)

16060.7.
  

On the request of a beneficiary, the trustee shall provide the terms of the trust to the beneficiary unless the trustee is not required to provide the terms of the trust to the beneficiary in accordance with Section 16069.

(Added by Stats. 2010, Ch. 621, Sec. 2. (SB 202) Effective January 1, 2011.)

16061.
  

Except as provided in Section 16069, on reasonable request by a beneficiary, the trustee shall report to the beneficiary by providing requested information to the beneficiary relating to the administration of the trust relevant to the beneficiary’s interest.

(Amended by Stats. 2010, Ch. 621, Sec. 3. (SB 202) Effective January 1, 2011.)

16061.5.
  

(a) A trustee shall provide a true and complete copy of the terms of the irrevocable trust, or irrevocable portion of the trust, to each of the following:

(1) Any beneficiary of the trust who requests it, and to any heir of a deceased settlor who requests it, when a revocable trust or any portion of a revocable trust becomes irrevocable because of the death of one or more of the settlors of the trust, when a power of appointment is effective or lapses upon the death of a settlor under the circumstances described in paragraph (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 16061.7, or because, by the express terms of the trust, the trust becomes irrevocable within one year of the death of a settlor because of a contingency related to the death of one or more of the settlors of the trust.

(2) Any beneficiary of the trust who requests it, whenever there is a change of trustee of an irrevocable trust.

(3) If the trust is a charitable trust subject to the supervision of the Attorney General, to the Attorney General, if requested, when a revocable trust or any portion of a revocable trust becomes irrevocable because of the death of one or more of the settlors of the trust, when a power of appointment is effective or lapses upon the death of a settlor under the circumstances described in paragraph (3) of subdivision (a) of Section 16061.7, or because, by the express terms of the trust, the trust becomes irrevocable within one year of the death of a settlor because of a contingency related to the death of one or more of the settlors of the trust, and whenever there is a change of trustee of an irrevocable trust.

(b) The trustee shall, for purposes of this section, rely upon any final judicial determination of heirship. However, the trustee shall have discretion to make a good faith determination by any reasonable means of the heirs of a deceased settlor in the absence of a final judicial determination of heirship known to the trustee.

(Amended by Stats. 2010, Ch. 621, Sec. 4. (SB 202) Effective January 1, 2011.)

16061.7.
  

(a) A trustee shall serve a notification by the trustee as described in this section in the following events:

(1) When a revocable trust or any portion thereof becomes irrevocable because of the death of one or more of the settlors of the trust, or because, by the express terms of the trust, the trust becomes irrevocable within one year of the death of a settlor because of a contingency related to the death of one or more of the settlors of the trust.

(2) Whenever there is a change of trustee of an irrevocable trust.

(3) Whenever a power of appointment retained by a settlor is effective or lapses upon death of the settlor with respect to an inter vivos trust which was, or was purported to be, irrevocable upon its creation. This paragraph shall not apply to a charitable remainder trust. For purposes of this paragraph, “charitable remainder trust” means a charitable remainder annuity trust or charitable remainder unitrust as defined in Section 664(d) of the Internal Revenue Code.

(4) The duty to serve the notification by the trustee pursuant to this subdivision is the duty of the continuing or successor trustee, and any one cotrustee may serve the notification.

(b) The notification by the trustee required by subdivision (a) shall be served on each of the following:

(1) Each beneficiary of the irrevocable trust or irrevocable portion of the trust, subject to the limitations of Section 15804.

(2) Each heir of the deceased settlor, if the event that requires notification is the death of a settlor or irrevocability within one year of the death of the settlor of the trust by the express terms of the trust because of a contingency related to the death of a settlor.

(3) If the trust is a charitable trust subject to the supervision of the Attorney General, to the Attorney General.

(c) A trustee shall, for purposes of this section, rely upon any final judicial determination of heirship, known to the trustee, but the trustee shall have discretion to make a good faith determination by any reasonable means of the heirs of a deceased settlor in the absence of a final judicial determination of heirship known to the trustee.

(d) The trustee need not provide a copy of the notification by trustee to any beneficiary or heir (1) known to the trustee but who cannot be located by the trustee after reasonable diligence or (2) unknown to the trustee.

(e) The notification by trustee shall be served by any of the methods described in Section 1215 to the last known address.

(f) The notification by trustee shall be served not later than 60 days following the occurrence of the event requiring service of the notification by trustee, or 60 days after the trustee became aware of the existence of a person entitled to receive notification by trustee, if that person was not known to the trustee on the occurrence of the event requiring service of the notification. If there is a vacancy in the office of the trustee on the date of the occurrence of the event requiring service of the notification by trustee, or if that event causes a vacancy, then the 60-day period for service of the notification by trustee commences on the date the new trustee commences to serve as trustee.

(g) The notification by trustee shall contain the following information:

(1) The identity of the settlor or settlors of the trust and the date of execution of the trust instrument.

(2) The name, address, and telephone number of each trustee of the trust.

(3) The address of the physical location where the principal place of administration of the trust is located, pursuant to Section 17002.

(4) Any additional information that may be expressly required by the terms of the trust instrument.

(5) A notification that the recipient is entitled, upon reasonable request to the trustee, to receive from the trustee a true and complete copy of the terms of the trust.

(h) If the notification by the trustee is served because a revocable trust or any portion of it has become irrevocable because of the death of one or more settlors of the trust, or because, by the express terms of the trust, the trust becomes irrevocable within one year of the death of a settlor because of a contingency related to the death of one or more of the settlors of the trust, the notification by the trustee shall also include a warning, set out in a separate paragraph in not less than 10-point boldface type, or a reasonable equivalent thereof, that states as follows:

“You may not bring an action to contest the trust more than 120 days from the date this notification by the trustee is served upon you or 60 days from the date on which a copy of the terms of the trust is delivered to you during that 120-day period, whichever is later.”

(i) Any waiver by a settlor of the requirement of serving the notification by trustee required by this section is against public policy and shall be void.

(j) A trustee may serve a notification by trustee in the form required by this section on any person in addition to those on whom the notification by trustee is required to be served. A trustee is not liable to any person for serving or for not serving the notice on any person in addition to those on whom the notice is required to be served. A trustee is not required to serve a notification by trustee if the event that otherwise requires service of the notification by trustee occurs before January 1, 1998.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 319, Sec. 87. (AB 976) Effective January 1, 2018.)

16061.8.
  

No person upon whom the notification by the trustee is served pursuant to this chapter, whether the notice is served on him or her within or after the time period set forth in subdivision (f) of Section 16061.7, may bring an action to contest the trust more than 120 days from the date the notification by the trustee is served upon him or her, or 60 days from the date on which a copy of the terms of the trust is delivered pursuant to Section 1215 to him or her during that 120-day period, whichever is later.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 319, Sec. 88. (AB 976) Effective January 1, 2018.)

16061.9.
  

(a) A trustee who fails to serve the notification by trustee as required by Section 16061.7 on a beneficiary shall be responsible for all damages, attorney’s fees, and costs caused by the failure unless the trustee makes a reasonably diligent effort to comply with that section.

(b) A trustee who fails to serve the notification by trustee as required by Section 16061.7 on an heir who is not a beneficiary and whose identity is known to the trustee shall be responsible for all damages caused to the heir by the failure unless the trustee shows that the trustee made a reasonably diligent effort to comply with that section. For purposes of this subdivision, “reasonably diligent effort” means that the trustee has delivered notice pursuant to Section 1215 to the heir at the heir’s last address actually known to the trustee.

(c) A trustee, in exercising discretion with respect to the timing and nature of distributions of trust assets, may consider the fact that the period in which a beneficiary or heir could bring an action to contest the trust has not expired.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 319, Sec. 89. (AB 976) Effective January 1, 2018.)

16062.
  

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section and in Section 16064, the trustee shall account at least annually, at the termination of the trust, and upon a change of trustee, to each beneficiary to whom income or principal is required or authorized in the trustee’s discretion to be currently distributed.

(b) A trustee of a living trust created by an instrument executed before July 1, 1987, is not subject to the duty to account provided by subdivision (a).

(c) A trustee of a trust created by a will executed before July 1, 1987, is not subject to the duty to account provided by subdivision (a), except that if the trust is removed from continuing court jurisdiction pursuant to Article 2 (commencing with Section 17350) of Chapter 4 of Part 5, the duty to account provided by subdivision (a) applies to the trustee.

(d) Except as provided in Section 16064, the duty of a trustee to account pursuant to former Section 1120.1a of the Probate Code (as repealed by Chapter 820 of the Statutes of 1986), under a trust created by a will executed before July 1, 1977, which has been removed from continuing court jurisdiction pursuant to former Section 1120.1a, continues to apply after July 1, 1987. The duty to account under former Section 1120.1a may be satisfied by furnishing an account that satisfies the requirements of Section 16063.

(e) Any limitation or waiver in a trust instrument of the obligation to account is against public policy and shall be void as to any sole trustee who is either of the following:

(1) A disqualified person as defined in former Section 21350.5 (as repealed by Chapter 620 of the Statutes of 2010).

(2) Described in subdivision (a) of Section 21380, but not described in Section 21382.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 86, Sec. 250. (SB 1171) Effective January 1, 2017.)

16063.
  

(a) An account furnished pursuant to Section 16062 shall contain the following information:

(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.

(5) A statement that the recipient of the account may petition the court pursuant to Section 17200 to obtain a court review of the account and of the acts of the trustee.

(6) A statement that claims against the trustee for breach of trust may not be made after the expiration of three years from the date the beneficiary receives an account or report disclosing facts giving rise to the claim.

(b) All accounts filed to be approved by a court shall be presented in the manner provided in Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 1060) of Part 1 of Division 3.

(Repealed and added by Stats. 1997, Ch. 724, Sec. 26. Effective January 1, 1998.)

16064.
  

The trustee is not required to account to a beneficiary as described in subdivision (a) of Section 16062, in any of the following circumstances:

(a) To the extent the trust instrument waives the account, except that no waiver described in subdivision (e) of Section 16062 shall be valid or enforceable. Regardless of a waiver of accounting in the trust instrument, upon a showing that it is reasonably likely that a material breach of the trust has occurred, the court may compel the trustee to account.

(b) As to a beneficiary who has waived in writing the right to an account. A waiver of rights under this subdivision may be withdrawn in writing at any time as to accounts for transactions occurring after the date of the written withdrawal. Regardless of a waiver of accounting by a beneficiary, upon a showing that is reasonably likely that a material breach of the trust has occurred, the court may compel the trustee to account.

(c) In any of the circumstances set forth in Section 16069.

(Amended by Stats. 2010, Ch. 621, Sec. 7. (SB 202) Effective January 1, 2011.)

16068.
  

Any waiver by a settlor of the obligation of the trustee of either of the following is against public policy and shall be void:

(a) To provide the terms of the trust to the beneficiary as required by Sections 16060.7 and 16061.5.

(b) To provide requested information to the beneficiary as required by Section 16061.

(Added by Stats. 2010, Ch. 621, Sec. 8. (SB 202) Effective January 1, 2011.)

16069.
  

The trustee is not required to account to the beneficiary, provide the terms of the trust to a beneficiary, or provide requested information to the beneficiary pursuant to Section 16061, in any of the following circumstances:

(a) In the case of a beneficiary of a revocable trust, as provided in Section 15800, for the period when the trust may be revoked.

(b) If the beneficiary and the trustee are the same person.

(Added by Stats. 2010, Ch. 621, Sec. 9. (SB 202) Effective January 1, 2011.)

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