Treating Trust as Marital Trust was Patent Error

The decedent’s inter vivos trust directed the division of the trust into a marital deduction trust and nonmarital trust, but no marital trust was necessary because the gross estate was less than the federal estate tax exclusion amount. The administration of the trust as though it was a marital trust, over which the surviving spouse had greater powers, was a patent error for which the trustees will be surcharged, and the counsel for the trustees is surcharged for failing to properly counsel the trustees. Jean Goodwin Trust, 10 Fid.Rep.3d 31 (Montgomery O.C. 2019).

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