Breach of Fiduciary Duty
A fiduciary is an individual or an entity that has a legal obligation to act in the best interest of his or her client. For example, an executor has a fiduciary relationship with the beneficiaries of a decedent’s will. The executor is under a legal obligation to manage the decedent’s estate through probate in a manner that is in the best interests of the beneficiaries, putting his or her own interests aside. Other examples of fiduciaries include trustee, attorneys, guardians, and agents. If a fiduciary breaches his or her duty there may be serious legal consequences. If you are involved in a matter related to a breach of fiduciary duty, contact Chicago breach of fiduciary duty lawyer at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates to discuss your case.Fiduciary Relationships
There are a number of situations that involve fiduciary relationships including:
- Executor and beneficiary. An executor has a fiduciary relationship with the beneficiaries of a will. An executor must manage the estate with the beneficiaries’ best interests in mind.
- Trustees and beneficiaries. A trustee is a person who is appointed by the person who created the trust to manage the trust according to the terms of the trust agreement for the benefit of the named beneficiaries.
- Principals and agents. When you create a power of attorney you as the principal, establish a fiduciary relationship with the person you name as your agent. The agent is legally obligated to act on your behalf, in your interest, and without conflict of interest.
- Lawyers and clients. There is also a fiduciary relationship between an attorney and his or her client. There must be the highest level of trust between an attorney and the client.
- Guardians and wards. If a guardianship has been established, the guardian is the fiduciary who is responsible for making sure that the minor child or adult has the appropriate care. This may involve a broad range of activities depending on the terms of the guardianship, and depending on whether the guardianship is over a minor child or over an adult. If you are concerned about the actions of a guardian, discuss the matter with a Chicago breach of fiduciary duty lawyer.
A breach of fiduciary duty occurs when the fiduciary such as executor takes an action that puts the fiduciary’s interests or some other person’s interests above the interest of the client. For example, if an executor must sell estate assets, the executor must make sure that he sells the property for a fair price. If the executor sells the property to a friend for a price that is less than fair market value, or that is less than the price that someone else would have paid, the beneficiaries would have a case for a breach of fiduciary duty. Similarly, if there are discrepancies in the accounting of the estate, there may be grounds for an allegation of a breach of fiduciary duty.Consequences of a Breach of Fiduciary Duty
As a breach of fiduciary attorney in Chicago will explain, if a breach of fiduciary duty is found, there are a variety of possible consequences. For example, if the breach involved an impermissible transaction, the court may order that the transaction be cancelled or reversed. Or, the court may order that the fiduciary pay restitution to the beneficiaries, estate, trust, or client. It is also possible that the fiduciary is required to step down from his or her position as a fiduciary.Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates
If you would like to pursue action related to a breach of fiduciary duty, or if you have been accused of breaching your fiduciary duty, it is important that you are represented by an experienced breach of fiduciary duty attorney serving clients in Chicago who has the skill, knowledge and resources to ensure that your legal rights are protected. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates have years of experience representing clients in matters relating to fiduciary responsibilities. Contact us at 855-454-5529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve individuals throughout Chicago.