Can a trustee charge for services?

I am trustee to my Parents estate, not a lot but I had been their caregiver for several years, taking them out of state to Dr apts, sometimes hospital stays for weeks at a time away from work home. Doing paperwork being in charge of selling renting homes along with typing up contracts, deeds, foreclosure a couple evictions. I never got paid for any of it, I did it because I was their Daughter. My siblings live over 2,000 miles away have not been around to help much. Even to clean the house out to list for sell they weren’t here to help. I have lost a lot of pay from wages just wondering if it’s right to get some kind of compensation.

Asked on September 6, 2017 under Estate Planning, Kansas

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss and for the situation that arose while you were taking care of everything.  I can see why your parents chose you to take on this responsibility. What does the Trust say?  Generally in KLansas the answer is yes, a Trustee receives compensation. If the Trust allows for compensation then absolutely yes, you would be entitled to compensation. If it is not specific but says only "reasonable" compensation then you would have to determine what you did and the value for same.  Here is my concern: Kansas law says that a Trustee can waive their right to compensation either explicitly (by signing something) or intent to waive your right can be inferred.  It can be inferred when a party does not file for compensation during the time that they are administering the Trust.  How long have you been taking care of things?  Do you think that your siblings will give you a hard time if you put in for fees now?  If the Trust says no compensation then no.  I would seek legal help here for many reasons but mostly to determine if you are entitled to compensation (if it is silent I would err on the yes side) and if yes, then if your actions constituted a waiver.  Good luck.


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