Professional Fiduciaries

Last week I had a professional fiduciary named as Administrator in one of my probate cases here at the Sacramento county probate Court.  Professional fiduciaries are a great choice to serve as administrator when there is fighting, or potential fighting, between family members. They are licensed by the state and can be bonded. In fact, there is a whole list of them at www.pfac-pro.orgwhich serves all of California.

In this case the siblings get along ok but nobody could agree who should serve as administrator of their dad’s estate. Rather than have to face the issues of who trusted (or didn’t trust) who we opted to go with the professional. I think this is going to work out for everybody.

The cost is not great as the professional fiduciary gets the same administrators fee as laid out in the probate code that any administrator would get. That is, the professional gets paid the same as the family member would get. It thus makes great economic sense to use a professional!

I guess the key here is don’t let potential in-fighting delay the start of probate.  Get someone going so the 7 month probate clock starts ticking!

I will paste all of that probate code section below.

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California Probate Code Section 10800

(a) Subject to the provisions of this part, for ordinary
services the personal representative shall receive compensation based
on the value of the estate accounted for by the personal
representative, as follows:
   (1) Four percent on the first one hundred thousand dollars
   (2) Three percent on the next one hundred thousand dollars
   (3) Two percent on the next eight hundred thousand dollars
   (4) One percent on the next nine million dollars ($9,000,000).
   (5) One-half of one percent on the next fifteen million dollars
   (6) For all amounts above twenty-five million dollars
($25,000,000), a reasonable amount to be determined by the court.
   (b) For the purposes of this section, the value of the estate
accounted for by the personal representative is the total amount of
the appraisal value of property in the inventory, plus gains over the
appraisal value on sales, plus receipts, less losses from the
appraisal value on sales, without reference to encumbrances or other
obligations on estate property.
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