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The Trustee's Legal Companion: A Step-by-Step Guide to Administering a Living Trust Paperback – May 9, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-1413311891 ISBN-10: 141331189X Edition: 1st

10 New from $38.71 19 Used from $9.04
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Paperback, May 9, 2010
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Product Details

  • Series: Trustee's Legal Companion: A Step-By-Step Guide to Administering a Living Trust
  • Paperback: 395 pages
  • Publisher: NOLO; 1 edition (May 9, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 141331189X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1413311891
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 6.8 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #277,637 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Nolo is a pioneer in both consumer and business self-help books and software.” Los Angeles Times “Nolo is always there in a jam as the nation’s premier publisher of do-it-yourself legal books.” Newsweek --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Book Description

The guidance every trustee needs to handle paperwork, get help from experts, and keep beneficiaries informed. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 36 customer reviews
I like very much when a book with legal information is written in plain, easy to read English.
Jeff N
If you've signed on or are considering signing on to be the trustee of someone else's living trust, you most definitely need this book.
Sharon Isch
This book saved us thousands of dollars in attorney's fee by answering just about all our questions.
B. Carlsen

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By R. Eisenberg VINE VOICE on July 14, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Once again, Nolo has produced an amazingly helpful guide to what can be a rather murky process. I had never truly understood the significance of a trust, nor the subtleties. And as co-administrator of mine, I knew i was in the right book when one of the first things I read was, "If you are a co-administrator, be warned it will make things even more difficult. Great. The authors jump right into it by describing the prospective trustee just what they're in for, and assuring you that if you have any doubts as to your abilities in this regard, to take a pass with no bad feelings.

Straightforward, you could say, like all the other Nolo books I have read. It is quite current, updated but a few months ago,and also gives information specific to particular states, which is also simply interesting to read and learn what the differences are. It also allows me to ask questions now, instead of waiting until it is too late and I can only turn to a lawyer. Not that there's anything wrong in that, but the more informed I am the better job I can do of avoiding pitfalls due to a lack of basic facts.

While I am trying to read it cover to cover, it is organized (and the authors point this out) to be also useful in skipping around should a specific issue arise. I plan on doing both- forewarned is forearmed and all- but I know when a gray area in my family trust appears, this fine book will be most illuminating.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By korova on June 24, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Nolo is well known for its clearly written do-it-yourself guides to handling legal issues. I've used many Nolo products in the past and have always found them to be informative and practical. "The Trustee's Legal Companion" is no exception.

Anybody who is a trustee of a living trust, or might be named as a trustee, will find this book to be an invaluable resource. The text is very comprehensive, with guidance for all of the important activities in administering a living trust: deciding if one should be a trustee, working with beneficiaries, managing assets, dealing with taxes, and terminating the trust.

As with just about all Nolo publications, this book is organized in a very straightforward way. Each chapter covers a broad topic, such as The First Few Months [of running a trust after assuming control], Assets That Should Be in the Trust-But Aren't, Thinking Like a Trustee, or Getting Help When You Need It. After a brief introduction, the text explains the key principles underlying each topic and helps you figure out your legal rights and responsibilities.

The book does have a couple of minor weaknesses. First, task checklists are scattered throughout the text. Most other Nolo books gather their checklists, often as tear-out pages, in a single appendix. Having everything in one place would be more convenient. In addition, this book is written in more of a textbook style than other Nolo titles. While the book is still easy to read and understand, the outline/bullet point format used in other books is better suited for presenting this kind of material to a general audience. These are minor quibbles though, and don't detract much from the overall quality of the book.

Bottom line: "The Trustee's Legal Companion" is a reliable, no frills-no hype guide. All living trust trustees (and prospective trustees) owe it to themselves to pick up this book. Four stars.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Gizmo on September 30, 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I have held off reviewing this because it's one of those products where it's hard to evaluate how good it is until it's really called upon - which, in this case, would be upon the death of a loved one with a living trust in place. In the meantime I can say this: The book is written by two estate planning attorneys and is written in language that is relatively easy to understand. Not only does the book cover the tasks required of the trustee in administering a living trust, but the book goes further and includes help for handling things that are OUTSIDE of the trust (but might involve the trustee anyway) - e.g. life insurance, retirement plans, pension plans, etc. The book has been helpful in guiding some steps we can take now with regards to the trust to facilitate it being more easily administered later. Laws may change and this may slightly change some applications of this guide over time, but I do think the guide is an excellent reference book to keep on-hand and consult periodically.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By C. Shortell on October 27, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Even with the administration of my mother's trust which was a simple trust, this book was invaluable. Probate has steps that are outlined by the court and there are lots of books on the subject. There are very few guide books for administering trusts that outline it so clearly--this book does that. Because I live in a different state, I hired a lawyer to assist me. I saved lots of money because I could consolidate all my questions and only use him to assist with certain things while I did most of the rest with this book's guidance. It is well organized and clearly written with lots of examples and references for resources to use. I highly recommend this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By nekko1 VINE VOICE on July 19, 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Many Americans, especially in California, now have family trusts. Which means sooner or later, you may be, knowingly or unknowingly, a trustee for an estate.

It is a huge job which will require 3-6 months of work, minimum. Maybe even up to 2 years of commitment.

Buy this book - it is chock full of examples, definitions, sample forms, explanations and "watch out for this" situations. It is written for the layperson who has no legal background. Everything is explained and nothing is assumed. This is really important given a seemingly simple decision can have painful consequences later! I even liked the "never do this" advice. It was dense, but easy to read and understand. This is not always easy for effectively a legal textbook/primer.

Working with grieving and possibly irrational beneficiaries can be challenging. And it is useful to know what to do in what order - both for your own protection and the beneficiaries. The book covers what to do in the first days, who to notify and how, insurance, hidden assets, taxes, accounting and even final termination of the trust. Even if you are not a trustee, as a beneficiary it might be useful to read so that you know what the trustee *should* be doing. Well worth $26.
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