Question: Under current Maryland law (the more recently passed Maryland Trust Act), assuming a Maryland trust is silent on the issue, does Maryland law give the beneficiary the right to an accounting of the trust assets? The Settlor who created this particular trust died in 2010. Answer: The new Maryland Trust Act (“MTA”) (which is the statute that Maryland adopted recently in an attempt to codify the common law as it applies to trusts), overrides the provisions of the trust because it will apply to all trusts created before or after the enactment of the MTA. Reports and notice to qualified beneficiaries are required under the MTA. Moreover, unless it is unreasonable under the circumstances, a trustee shall promptly respond to the request of a qualified beneficiary for information related to the administration of the trust (including a request for a copy of the trust instrument). Comment: This trust presumably became irrevocable upon the death of the Settlor in 2010. The new MTA, effective on or after January 1, 2015, applicable to pre-existing trusts and trusts created after January 1, 2015, requires that primary beneficiaries under an irrevocable trust are entitled to a copy of the trust document, plus information as to trust accounts.
ABOUT STEVE SHANE
Steve Shane provides strategic counseling to clients in need of estate administration, charitable giving and business continuity planning while minimizing estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer tax exposure. He offers legal guidance to clients on asset protection and the proper disposition of assets in accordance with the client’s objectives, while employing tax planning techniques such as the use of irrevocable trusts, life insurance planning, lifetime gifts and charitable trust. He is also experienced with drafting documents for business planning, the incorporation and application for exemption for Private Foundations and the administration of decedents’ estates. You can also connect with Offit Kurman via Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, and LinkedIn.
WASHINGTON | BALTIMORE | FREDERICK | PHILADELPHIA | WILMINGTON | VIRGINIA | NEW YORK