Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in California

My father who is still alive created a trust with his wife that has since deceased. It is a revocable trust in California. He wishes to remove the primary trustee from the trust as he no longer has confidence in him.

The trust has the following provision:

"Trustors serving together as Trustee or the remaining Trustor serving as Trustee may appoint in writing the next named successor trustee to serve as Trustee with Trustors or with the remaining Trustor. In that event, each Trustee may act separately unless Trustors or the remaining Trustor provide otherwise in the written document appointing the Co-Trustee."

Does this mean that my Dad may simply write a letter stating that he wishes to remove the problem trustee and leave the succession of trustees in place, notarize it and attach it to the trust, mailing a copy of this amendment to each trustee?

Asked on 1/26/20, 12:15 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Michele Cusack Pollak & Cusack

"Appoint in writing" does not mean write a letter. And, the clause you provide addresses appointment of a co-trustee while still living, not successor trustee. However, if the trust remains revocable and amendable after the first death, the successor Trustee provisions may be amended according to whatever formalities are required in the trust instrument.

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Answered on 1/26/20, 2:08 pm

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