Trust and Estates: If a trustee has acted reasonably and in good faith under the circumstances, the California Probate Court has disc​retio​n to excuse liability for a breach of trust if it would be equitable to do so.

New Case: Orange Catholic Foundation v. Arvizu – filed Oct. 17, 2018, Fourth District, Div. Three.

Probate Code section 16440, subdivision (b) provides that if a “trustee has acted reasonably and in good faith under the circumstances as known to the trustee,” a court has discretion to excuse him or her from liability for a breach of trust if it would be equitable to do so.

Substantial evidence supported a finding that a trustee acted reasonably and in good faith by not evicting a long-time family friend from the home where he had resided for many years, given that he was senile with minimal financial assets, and the property appreciated in value to the benefit of the trust beneficiaries. The trial court denied a petition to remove the Trustee of the Trust and for damages. Finding no abuse of discretion, the Judgment was affirmed.

To Discuss breach of trust with trust litigation lawyer Gregory W. Cabo, call (714) 771-2227.

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