Charitable Trust

A trust created to benefit one or more specific charitable organizations or the general public rather than a private individual or entity.


A separate and distinct provision in a legal document.


A person who is appointed as a joint executor to a will.


A person or entity who is appointed as a joint trustee over a trust.


A legal document which supplements or adds to a will, often modifying, explaining, or otherwise qualifying the will in some way.

Community Property

Assets owned in common by a validly married couple, each spouse generally holding a one-half interest in the property.

Conflict of Interest

An existing or possible incompatibility between a fiduciary’s personal interests and their fiduciary duties.


A guardian, protector, or preserver, appointed by a judge to manage the financial affairs and/or daily life of another person because of their incapacity.


To challenge the validity of an unfavorable claim through court proceedings.


A fee charged for a lawyer’s services only if litigation is successful or is favorably settled out of court, the amount charged being a percentage of the amount recovered for the client.

Corporate Fiduciary

An entity, often a bank, acting as the fiduciary over the financial assets of another person or entity.


A person or entity who has a legal claim against the assets of another.

Creditor Claim

The means by which a decedent’s creditor claims through court proceedings an entitlement to some of the money left by the decedent.

Crummey Notice

A notice which a trustee of a Crummey Trust gives to a beneficiary of a Crummey Trust, letting them know they have the right to make a withdrawal from the trust. This notice must be given in order for the beneficiary to be able to claim the gift tax exclusion for the...

Crummey Trust

A trust in which the trustee makes distributions to beneficiaries only up to the amount permitted for the annual gift tax exclusion.

De-Facto Trust

A third-party who has gone beyond simply aiding the trustee, but has instead taking control of, and actively manages, assets belonging to the trust.

Death Certificate

An official document verifying that a person has passed away, specifying such information as the date and time of death, the cause of death, the place of death, and the signature of a physician.


A specific amount of money that a person must pay to another person and which that other person has the legal right to collect.