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Hi, this is Stewart Albertson with Albertson & Davidson.  And I want to talk to you about when you, as a beneficiary, should get your trust distribution under the trust.  We get beneficiaries asking us quite often, “Hey, Mom and Dad has passed away.  It’s been about a year.  When should I get my trust distribution?

Most trusts are the kind of trust that can be distributed generally within one year to eighteen months.  Rarely will a trustee or trust administration need to go further than two years.  So somewhere along the lines of one year to eighteen months, you should see a trust distribution.

You can also get a preliminary distribution which is a distribution that comes early on in a case.  Let’s say that there’s a three million dollar trust and we know the expenses of doing the trust administration are going to be well less than a hundred thousand dollars.  In that case, the trustee should make a preliminary distribution to the trust beneficiaries, finish up the trust administration, and then make a final trust distribution of whatever is left over.

There are some estates that are subject to the estate and gift tax.  And while that’s rare these days because the applicable exclusion amount is so high for estate taxes, if that’s the case, the ultimate distribution of that trust is probably going to be two years.  Because the trustee is going to wait for the IRS to review the estate tax return and get a closing letter back from the IRS.  But, again, that’s the minority of cases.

The majority of trusts can get a preliminary distribution maybe within several months after Mom and Dad’s deaths, and then ultimately it should be about one year to eighteen months to get the final distribution.