Utah Probate Code 75-7-811

Utah Probate Code 75-7-811

Duty to inform and report

• Except to the extent the terms of the trust provide otherwise, a trustee shall keep the qualified beneficiaries of the trust reasonably informed about the administration of the trust and of the material facts necessary for them to protect their interests. Unless unreasonable under the circumstances, and unless otherwise provided by the terms of the trust a trustee shall promptly respond to a qualified beneficiary’s request for information related to the administration of the trust.

• Except to the extent the terms of the trust provide otherwise, a trustee:

• upon request of a qualified beneficiary, shall promptly furnish to the beneficiary a copy of the portions of the trust instrument which describe or affect the beneficiary’s interest;

• within 60 days after accepting a trusteeship, shall notify the qualified beneficiaries of the acceptance and of the trustee’s name, address, and telephone number;

• within 60 days after the date the trustee acquires knowledge of the creation of an irrevocable trust, or the date the trustee acquires knowledge that a formerly revocable trust has become irrevocable, whether by the death of the settler or otherwise, shall notify the qualified beneficiaries of the trust’s existence, of the identity of the settler or settlers, of the right to request a copy of the trust instrument, and of the right to a trustee’s report as provided in Subsection (3); and

• shall notify the qualified beneficiaries in advance of any change in the method or rate of the trustee’s compensation.

• A trustee shall send to the qualified beneficiaries who request it, at least annually and at the termination of the trust, a report of the trust property, liabilities, receipts, and disbursements, including the amount of the trustee’s compensation or a fee schedule or other writing showing how the trustee’s compensation was determined, a listing of the trust assets and, if feasible, their respective market values. Upon a vacancy in a trusteeship, unless a co-trustee remains in office, a report must be sent to the qualified beneficiaries by the former trustee, unless the terms of the trust provide otherwise. A personal representative, conservator, or guardian may send the qualified beneficiaries a report on behalf of a deceased or incapacitated trustee.

• A qualified beneficiary may waive the right to a trustee’s report or other information otherwise required to be furnished under this section. A beneficiary, with respect to future reports and other information, may withdraw a waiver previously given.

What Is a Trustee?

A trustee is a person or firm that holds and administers property or assets for the benefit of a third party. A trustee may be appointed for a wide variety of purposes, such as in the case of bankruptcy, for a charity, for a trust fund, or for certain types of retirement plans or pensions. Trustees are trusted to make decisions in the beneficiary’s best interests and often have a fiduciary responsibility to the trust beneficiaries. The trustee acts as the legal owner of trust assets, and is responsible for handling any of the assets held in trust, tax filings for the trust, and distributing the assets according to the terms of the trust. Both roles involve duties that are legally required.

The Trustee’s Duty to Inform and Report

Given the technical complexities of irrevocable trust administration, including the administration of irrevocable life insurance trusts (“ILITs”), trust litigation over breaches of fiduciary duty continues to rise. A trustee’s compliance with the duty to inform and report can be critical to avoiding liability. Most states impose a fiduciary duty on trustees of irrevocable trusts to inform and report to the beneficiaries regarding the trust accounts and administrative. Depending on the trust agreement and the applicable state law, this duty may range from mandating that the trustee notify beneficiaries of a trust’s existence and provide annual reports, to leaving all such disclosure and reporting activities in the trustee’s sole discretion.

These variations in state laws and increasingly complex trust agreements can present unique compliance challenges and potential liability exposure, particularly for non-professional trustees who lack the necessary experience and administrative infrastructure. A trustee’s duty to inform and report protects the interests of trust beneficiaries and can limit the trustee’s liability. This duty applies to trustees of all irrevocable trusts, including ILITs, even if the trust creator (grantor) is still living. As there is no uniform set of rules for compliance, however, each trustee must review the applicable state law, the trust agreement, and the trust’s circumstances to determine the specific reporting obligations. Due to legal nuances in understanding state statutes and trust agreements, non-professional trustees should consult with legal counsel to determine the scope of, and ensure compliance with, their disclosure obligations. Even when not required, trustees also may want to consider non-mandatory disclosures to beneficiaries to take advantage of available liability and other protections under state law.

Holding the Trustee Accountable

The law imposes certain informational requirements on trustees. Trustees have a duty generally to keep beneficiaries fully apprised regarding the trust’s activities. For example, a trustee must send a notice to all trust beneficiaries within 60 days after the settler of a revocable trust dies, informing the beneficiaries that they have a right to receive a copy of the trust instrument. In addition, the trustee must provide an annual accounting to the beneficiaries on request, showing the trust assets and liabilities, and the receipts and disbursements made during the accounting period. While there is no express requirement that a trustee provide an inventory of the trust assets to the beneficiaries within a specific period of time, the trustee should certainly do so in a timely manner. A trustee’s failure to keep the beneficiaries informed constitutes a breach of the trustee’s fiduciary duties for which the trustee can be removed, with court approval.

Reasons to Inform & Report For Compliance

State law may require a trustee to disclose the existence of a trust and other information to the beneficiaries, as well as provide written accounts of the trust’s assets, liabilities, receipts, and disbursements on a periodic basis and/or upon the occurrence of certain events (such as a change in trustee).


Generally, the duty to inform and report serves numerous practical considerations for both trustees and beneficiaries, which, depending on state law, include:

• Providing trust beneficiaries with sufficient information to enforce the trustee’s duties, preserve the trust, and protect their beneficial interests;

• Providing trustees with protection and closure with regard to specific transactions or for a certain time frame, particularly if no court approval is sought for the transaction or accounting;

• For changes in trustees, clearly delineating the actions and decisions of the prior trustee and providing full knowledge to the new trustee of the trust’s assets and activities;

• Evidencing good faith in trust administration and management (often, individual trustees will not be liable for breaches of fiduciary duty if they acted in good faith); and

• Starting the statute of limitations to run for actions again the trustee for breaches of fiduciary duty or other causes related to the matters disclosed or accounted for.

No Single Set of Rules

There is no single set of rules governing the duty to inform and report. The scope of the duty has developed over time, state-by-state, based on case law and the Uniform Trust Code (“UTC”),[i] a model code used by many states to develop their specific trust laws.[ii] Thus, state rules vary considerably and include both mandatory provisions and default rules, which a trust agreement can modify or delete. Also the specific requirements for disclosure and reporting, including the forms to use and the protections available, will depend on the trust’s terms, the interest, age, and capacity of a beneficiary, and the size, type, and complexity of trust assets or transactions.

Some Commonalities

Despite variations, the reporting and disclosure rules generally fall into several broad categories. Accordingly, using the UTC as a guide, many trustees could find themselves subject to one or more of the following obligations:

• Keep Beneficiaries Reasonably Informed: The trustee must actively report to “qualified” beneficiaries regarding the trust’s administration and material facts necessary for them to protect their interests. Generally, “qualified beneficiaries” are current beneficiaries, those next in line as beneficiaries after the current beneficiaries’ interests terminate, and anyone entitled to income or principal if the trust terminates.

• Provide Periodic Reports (Accounts): The trustee must send to current beneficiaries and permissible beneficiaries of trust income or principal, and to other beneficiaries who request it, a written report that includes the trust property, liabilities, receipts, and disbursements, the source and amount of the trustee’s compensation, and a list of the trust assets and, if feasible, their market values. The reports must be sent at least annually and at trust termination.

• Respond to Beneficiary Requests for Information: The trustee must promptly respond to any beneficiary’s request for information related to the trust’s administration, unless unreasonable under the circumstances and furnish a copy of the trust agreement to any beneficiary who requests a copy. For these purposes, a “beneficiary” is essentially anyone with any interest in the trust, whether present, future, contingent, or vested.

• Notify Beneficiaries of Trust’s Creation and Related Information: Within 60 days after a trustee learns of the creation of an irrevocable trust or a change in a revocable trust to an irrevocable trust, the trustee must notify the qualified beneficiaries of the trust’s existence, the identity of the grantor(s), and the beneficiaries’ right to request a copy of the trust instrument and to receive a trustee’s report.

• Notify Beneficiaries of Acceptance of Trusteeship: Within 60 days after accepting a trusteeship, the trustee must notify qualified beneficiaries of the acceptance and trustee’s name, address, and telephone number.

• Notify of Changes in Trustee’s Compensation: The trustee must notify qualified beneficiaries in advance of any change in the method or rate of the trustee’s compensation.

Trust Limits on Reporting Obligations

Despite the benefits offered by making trust disclosures, many grantors wish to keep trust information confidential, due to privacy concerns and the worry that the disclosure of information to a beneficiary may create disincentives for him or her to attain an education, obtain employment, or achieve other social and professional milestones. To address these concerns, the trust disclosure laws of most states consist primarily of default rules, which a grantor may waive or modify in the trust agreement. For example, under the UTC, the trust agreement can modify or waive the duty to (1) respond to a beneficiary’s request for a copy of the trust, (2) provide annual reports to qualified beneficiaries, and (3) advise a beneficiary under age 25 of the trust’s existence, the trustee’s identity, and the beneficiary’s right to request trustee reports. The UTC, however, makes mandatory the duty to respond to a qualified beneficiary’s request for trustee reports and other information reasonably related to the trust’s administration (with an option to make this mandatory only for beneficiaries who have attained age 25).

Other “optional” provisions the UTC would make mandatory include the duty to notify qualified beneficiaries of the trust’s existence, the trustee’s identity, and their right to request trustee reports (can be made mandatory only for beneficiaries age 25+), as well as the duty to notify beneficiaries of the acceptance of a trusteeship (again, can be mandatory only for beneficiaries age 25+). However, even among states that have adopted the UTC, there has been a significant lack of uniformity regarding enactment of the UTC’s mandatory disclosure requirements. Some states permit “quiet” or “silent” trusts, which allow the grantor to waive all or almost all disclosures to the beneficiaries, perpetually or for some period of time (such as until after the grantor passes, or a beneficiary attains a desired age). Other states allow the grantor to designate a “designated representative”, surrogate, or alternate person to receive certain or all mandatory or other disclosures on behalf of the trust beneficiaries, which attempts to balance the need for disclosure and the desire for privacy.

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Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
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West Jordan, Utah
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Who Inherits When There Is No Will?

Who Inherits When There Is No Will

On the off chance that your mate or parent bites the dust without a Will, Utah law figures out who will acquire his or her property. These laws, called intestacy laws, are basically state-composed Wills that figure out who gets the decedent’s property. “Intestate” portrays an individual who kicks the bucket without a will. An individual who bites the dust with a Will is said to pass on “testate.” By and large, in intestate progression, property goes to close relatives, beginning with an enduring mate and youngsters, and after that step by step broadening out to guardians, kin, nieces and nephews, grandparents and their lawful relatives, and progressively far off relatives after that. On the off chance that positively no relatives can be discovered, at that point a decedent’s property goes to the state. Also, just to make everything increasingly convoluted, the laws of more than one state may apply. The guidelines for conveying an individual’s close to home property (autos, garments, adornments, and so on.) will be where that individual lived, called “residence” in legal talk.

In any case, if an individual additionally claimed genuine property in another express, that state’s law would apply to the conveyance of that genuine property. Since these laws are composed to cover a tremendous assortment of families and circumstances, they can be confused to peruse, and they change state to state. Fundamentally, in each state, you need to comprehend the sort of property an individual has and the family connections that individual needs to work your way down to who gets what. In certain states like the state of Utah, for instance, an enduring companion will acquire all the property left by a decedent, if the majority of that individual’s enduring heirs are likewise relatives of the enduring mate. For instance, in a state that way, if John bites the dust intestate, deserting a wife, Kate, a child little girl, Sally, a sibling and the two guardians, Kate, the enduring life partner, would acquire everything. In certain states including Utah, however, an enduring companion would just acquire a segment of John’s domain. In New York, for instance, Kate, as the enduring life partner, would acquire $50,000 and one-portion of the home, while Sally, the girl, would acquire the rest. In certain states, Kate may acquire one-portion of the domain and the other half would go to John’s enduring guardians. Furthermore, in certain states, if John had been hitched before he hitched Kate, and had kids from that first marriage, Kate would acquire a bit of his domain (one-half or perhaps 33%) and the rest would be separated between his kids from the two relational unions. Utah State likewise vary by the way they gap up property among the enduring heirs. In the event that an individual who might be qualified for acquire has passed on before the decedent, that individual’s relatives will acquire that share.

There are two distinct approaches to decide how much such relatives are qualified for. Per capita appropriation signifies “per head” in Latin and every relative takes an equivalent offer. In the event that, for instance, one kin and two nieces of an expired kin are the correct heirs, each would get 33% of the domain. Per stirpes appropriation signifies “by the root” in Latin and every relative takes an offer dictated by the root- – or what that individual’s perished predecessor would have acquired. For instance, if a youngster would have acquired one-portion of a decedent’s benefits, yet kicked the bucket first and left three kids, those three kids would each acquire one-6th of the domain (each would acquire 33% of their parent’s one-half offer).

Prior to broadly expounding on the best way to comprehend Utah’s intestacy laws, it’s essential to understand that these laws just apply to some of what an individual may have possessed at death. Intestacy law just applies to property that would have gone by a Will (if that individual had kept in touch with one)- – yet this does exclude resources that go to individuals at death by beneficiary assignment or joint tenure, which can be the greater part of what an individual claimed. Here’s a rundown of normal resources that go to individuals at death outside of intestacy laws:
• Retirement accounts
• Life coverage
• Payable on death accounts
• Move on death accounts
• Annuities
• Genuine property held in joint occupancy
• Genuine property held as network property with right of survivorship
• Financial balances held in joint occupancy
• Property held in living trusts

Every single such resource pass naturally to the general population named as beneficiaries or to the enduring joint proprietors or to the beneficiaries of a living trust. (In the event that no beneficiary is named, or on the off chance that the named beneficiary has as of now kicked the bucket, at that point these advantages go to the decedent’s bequest – which implies that they will be liable to intestacy laws.)
Intestacy law applies to everything else possessed by an individual at death–, for example, financial balances held for the sake of the dead individual, genuine property held exclusively or as an occupant in like manner, stocks and bonds held in venture accounts in that individual’s name, and the majority of an individual’s unmistakable individual property (furniture, garments, vehicles, and such). Utah’s intestacy law manage who will acquire such resources and Utah’s probate laws decide how those advantages will be moved. For the most part, in the event that somebody dies with a Will a court needs to manage the appropriation of a home.

That is the thing that probate is, a procedure wherein a judge confirms that a Will is substantial (or if there is no Will, distinguishes the best possible heirs) and, when the ideal individuals have been told, the benefits have been appropriately esteemed, and charges and loan bosses have been paid, issues a court request taking into account the dispersion of the bequest. Passing on without a Will doesn’t get you out of that procedure, it just implies that as opposed to deciphering the decedent’s Will, the court will pursue Utah’s intestacy laws to disseminate the bequest. To discover how probate functions in Utah, call Ascent Law LLC for more information.

In each state, however, domains that fall underneath a specific dollar breaking point don’t need to experience probate by any stretch of the imagination. In the event that a domain is little enough, you needn’t bother with a court request before having the option to convey that property to the best possible individuals. Along these lines, if your life partner or parent kicks the bucket without a Will, your first inquiry will be whether you are going to need to open up a probate continuing and get a court request before you can disperse the property. On the off chance that an individual’s benefits fall underneath Utah’s little bequests limit, you won’t have to open a probate continuing in Utah to circulate the property, yet on the off chance that the decedent’s advantages are more than this point of confinement, you will need to open a probate continuing to convey the resources for the individuals who remain to inherit. Snap here to find out about the little domains limit in Utah.

State intestacy laws are composed like PC, dislike books, in spite of the fact that they do have a specific cleanser show like quality to them. (It very well may be incredible to imaging an individual with each one of those entangled family connections simultaneously!) Basically, you can consider state intestacy laws like a long arrangement of “Assuming this then that” explanations – IF the decedent was hitched, and had no kids, then the life partner acquires all.” Once you locate the correct arrangement of lots of ifs you can figure out who gets the property at issue. The general population with the privilege to acquire are classified “heirs.”

Here’s a rundown of definitions to enable you to deal with the important terms and comprehend your relationship to the decedent, and your case on his or her benefits:

• Life partner. A mate is an individual who was lawfully hitched to the decedent, or, in certain states, a Registered Domestic accomplice. A couple of states perceive customary marriage, which implies that an individual who lived with the decedent as though wedded, and held themselves out to the world as that individual’s life partner would have indistinguishable lawful rights from a life partner regarding legacy. Snap here to see whether Utah perceives customary marriage.

• Children. A kid is generally characterized as an immediate relative of the dececent. That implies tyke, grandkid, greatgrandchild, etc. Legitimately embraced youngsters are dealt with simply like lineal relatives, so they check, as well. Furthermore, that implies that once a kid is lawfully received by another, that kid’s lawful connections to the birthparent are legitimately cut off, which implies that they don’t mean legacy purposes. Youngsters who were brought into the world after a parent bites the dust consider kids for legacy purposes.

• Stepchildren who were never lawfully embraced don’t generally consider youngsters for intestate purposes. Stepchildren who were received by a stepparent can at present acquire from their organic parent, yet this is reliant on state law. In certain states, an unadopted stepchild may qualify as a heir if certain conditions are fulfilled, for example, that the association with the parent began while the stepchild was a minor and proceeded all through the parent’s lifetime and the parent would have received that tyke yet there was some legitimate obstruction to doing as such (like the parent’s regular parent declining to agree to such appropriation).

• Outside of Marriage. A youngster brought into the world outside of a marriage has a similar case as a kid brought into the world within a marriage, yet the lawful issue that’ can be troublesome is figuring out who that kid’s legitimate parent is. It’s simple enough on the mother’s side: a kid can acquire from his or her introduction to the world mother. Be that as it may, on the dad’s side, if guardians were never hitched, a kid will need to demonstrate paternity to have a legitimate case. How does a kid do this? Here are some normal ways:

o A court request pronouncing paternity

o A composed proclamation from the dad recognizing paternity
Kin. Siblings, sisters, and stepbrothers and stepsisters all include in this gathering in many states. For instance, on the off chance that Sam wedded Sarah and had a little girl, Karen, at that point wedded Gloria and had twin children, Ike and Mike and after that passed on intestate, Karen, Ike and Mike (who have a typical dad) would all be viewed as his heirs.
In Utah, on the off chance that you leave no life partner and no relatives, your bequest will go to your folks. In the event that you left no guardians, your property will go to any of your enduring kin. On the off chance that you have no enduring kin, one-portion of the bequest will go to your maternal grandparents or their relatives, and the other half will go to your fatherly grandparents or their relatives. On the off chance that no living relatives can be discovered, the property escheats to the state to be put in training store. On the off chance that you pass on without a will and don’t have any family, your property will “escheat” into the state’s coffers. In any case, this in all respects once in a while happens in light of the fact that the laws are intended to get your property to any individual who was even remotely identified with you.

For instance, your property won’t go to the state in the event that you leave a life partner, youngsters, kin, guardians, grandparents, aunties or uncles, distant uncles or aunties, nieces or nephews, cousins of any degree, or the relatives of a mate who bites the dust before you do. Regularly, the “heirs” who are probably going to acquire under intestate progression will be the individual’s life partner or kids. The life partner has need. In any case, on the off chance that there is no living life partner, at that point the domain goes to the youngsters. In the event that there are no enduring youngsters, at that point Utah law manages that the home would next go to an enduring guardian. On the off chance that no parent endures, at that point the home goes to enduring relatives of the decedent’s folks (regularly kin of the decedent). On the off chance that no relative of a parent endures, at that point the home goes to any enduring grandparent. On the off chance that there is no enduring grandparent, at that point the domain goes to any enduring relative of the grandparents. On the off chance that nothing unless there are other options people endure, at that point Utah law looks to relatives of the decedent’s perished life partner who are not relatives of the decedent. The vast majority will have recognizable heirs under Utah’s arrangement of intestate progression. Be that as it may, on the off chance that no taker exists, at that point under Utah Code Section 75-2-105, the intestate home goes to the State to assist the state school finance.

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West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

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Do I Need a Will or a Trust?

Do I Need a Will or a Trust

Yоu hаvе worked very hаrd during your lifеtimе аnd it is оnlу natural that уоu wоuld like tо leave a lеgасу to уоur lоvеd оnеѕ. It wоuld be wiѕе tо find a wау to rеtаin some соntrоl over thе аѕѕеtѕ you’ve acquired during your life. Nо оnе wants the IRS, the government, certain сrеditоrѕ оr еvеn a divоrсе to рrеvеnt lоvеd оnеѕ from enjoying thе bеnеfitѕ of уоur lеgасу. Even if уоu аrе a реrѕоn оf modest mеаnѕ, you hаvе an estate. Yоur еѕtаtе consists оf аll уоur personal and rеаl рrореrtу, ѕuсh аѕ, retirement ассоuntѕ, a hоmе, jеwеlrу, rаrе соllесtiоnѕ, еtс. Thеrе are mаnу strategies tо еnѕurе уоur рrореrtу iѕ diѕtributеd ассоrding tо уоur wishes аnd in a timеlу fashion. The mоѕt bаѕiс methods tо trаnѕfеr a lеgасу are Wills and Trusts but, which is bеttеr for уоu?

If you are looking fоr a simple, оnе-linе аnѕwеr to thе ԛuеѕtiоn аbоvе, YES, уоu do nееd a will and truѕt tо dividе your аѕѕеtѕ tо уоur hеirѕ, closest living fаmilу mеmbеrѕ, blood relatives, оr whоеvеr you care about. We’ve had clients leave their Estate to a church, hospital, charity and even their pets. If you dо not leave a will writtеn, уоur assets might nоt distributed thе way уоu’d likе, аnd the court will dесidе whiсh оf your living mеmbеrѕ get ассеѕѕ to your рrореrty. Having a will and trust is therefore, еxtrеmеlу imроrtаnt so thаt уоu are fullу in соntrоl оf your аѕѕеtѕ аftеr уоur dеаth.

Whу are Willѕ аnd Living Truѕtѕ Imроrtаnt?

Wills аnd living trusts аrе thе оnlу way you саn mаkе ѕurе your assets are раѕѕеd оn thе оnеѕ уоu аrе related to, with the diѕtributiоnѕ уоu deem соrrесt. Pаrtiсulаrlу, if you hаvе ѕmаll children, willѕ аrе grеаt wауѕ tо establish guаrdiаnѕhiр оf minоrѕ and ensure thаt уоur kidѕ get thеir ѕhаrе of уоur аѕѕеtѕ аnd mоnеtаrу accumulations left bеhind.

Aѕ intestacy lаwѕ сhаngе frоm оnе ѕtаtе tо аnоthеr, уоu dо nоt know who gеtѕ how much access to your property if you do nоt leave a will bеhind.

The Diffеrеnсе Between a Will and a Trust

A will iѕ a dосumеnt thаt allows уоu tо fix which раrtѕ of your assets аrе dividеd аmоngѕt your heirs аnd fаmilу in thе event of death. Aftеr уоu die, аll the assets уоu оwn wоuld be dividеd аѕ per the inѕtruсtiоnѕ in thе will, and thus, you аrе solidly in control оf уоur fundѕ. Thе court ensures thаt the rightful distribution оf уоur funds takes рlасе аftеr your dеаth and there are no disputes.

A living truѕt iѕ more likе a lеgаl mесhаniѕm thаt mаkеѕ ѕurе уоu drаft terms аnd conditions for uѕе оf уоur assets and соntrоlѕ giftѕ and сhаritiеѕ уоu аrе likely to kеер соntinuing аftеr уоur dеаth. Living truѕtѕ аrе simply known to tаkе care оf your lifе insurance роliсiеѕ and other bеnеfitѕ аnd will not tаkе into account thе соmрlеtе ассruеd finаnсiаl holdings and аmоuntѕ you hаvе.

Thuѕ, legally, you аrе rесоmmеndеd tо hаvе bоth wills аnd truѕtѕ рut up in thе event оf аn untimеlу dеаth thuѕ, lеgаllу, you аrе rесоmmеndеd tо hаvе both willѕ and truѕtѕ established in thе еvеnt оf an untimеlу death. There is a way fоr уоu tо сhаngе your will аѕ mаnу timеѕ уоu’d wаnt tо while you are alive. The lаѕt version оf your will that you ѕign will bе соnѕidеrеd vаlid at thе timе оf your dеаth.

Conclusion on Wills and Trusts

It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. Legal problems come to everyone. Everyone has an Estate and if you’ve found this page, you are probably interested in learning more about wills and trusts. So go ahead and pick up the phone and call Ascent Law for your free consultation (801) 676-5506. We want to help you get your affairs in order!

Michael R. Anderson, JD

Ascent Law LLC
8833 S. Redwood Road, Suite C
West Jordan, Utah
84088 United States

Telephone: (801) 676-5506

Ascent Law LLC

4.7 stars – based on 45 reviews

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