Role of a Petition for Instructions in Los Angeles Probate

Petition for Instructions

When a Los Angeles probate executor or trustee of a trust is uncertain about an action, he or she files a petition for instructions in court to determine the best course of action.

There are many times where the executor cannot determine what the be course of action would be with respect to a certain issue.

Some examples of a matters which may require instructions are:

  1. Whether the trustee or executor should sell the house when there beneficiaries all do not get along.
  2. Another example may be instructions as to whether a beneficiary should be able to live in the decedent’s home during trust administration or probate administration.
  3.  Other times, the instructions sought may involve matters where the trustee or executor is also a beneficiary.   Where there is a potential for conflict, the trustee or executor can inform the court of the potential for conflict and ask whether he or she can act as to that matter

Function of a Petition for instructions

The function of the Petition for Instructions is several fold:

A.  The instruction by the court when followed by the trustee, relieves the trustee of liability with respect to that specific issue.

B.   The Petition for Instruction serves as a tool to bring beneficiaries to court and to give them notice of what the trustee or executor wants to do, so there is transparency in the actions  of the trustee or executor.

C.   The Petition is also used to create clarity for all fiduciaries and beneficiaries involved in the case as to the contents of the petition.

What to do when you receive a Petition for Instruction in the mail?

To find out what you should do if you have been served with a petition for instructions filed by a trustee or executor, call Mina Sirkin, Specialist in Trust and Probate in Los Angeles California at 818-340-4479 or Email:   Find us at