Legal Question in Wills and Trusts in Virginia

Can a Revoccable Trust be supoened in a civil litigation? Can the person claim that their Trust is an "attorney client priviledge'?

Asked on 3/12/10, 8:35 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Michael Hendrickson Law Office Michael E. Hendrickson

One does not subpoena an intangible object such as a trust which would be incapable in and of itself of responding to such a subpoena. One might, however,

possibly subpoena a trustee of such a trust as a witness to offer information or

facts concerning the trust which might be relevant to the civil litigation matter at hand.

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Answered on 3/17/10, 9:00 pm
Robert B. Walker Law Office of Robert B. Walker

Let's make sure we are talking about the same thing here. A revocable trust is one in which the Grantor is also the initial Trustee, and provides that the initial Trustee may amend or revoke the Trust in any way he/she chooses. Once the initial Trustee dies (or becomes incompetent), it becomes irrevocable and may have spendthrift provisions and other clauses to protect it from the beneficiary's creditors.

Now, assuming that the one you are asking about is still revocable, the document itself could be "subpoened" either through Request for Production of Documents or Subpoena Duces Tecum. A revocable trust provides the Grantor (the one who made the trust) with any asset protection, and the trust would be an available asset. i don't see how the trust could be subject to the attorney-client privelege once it was executed.

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Answered on 3/18/10, 5:37 am

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