How Lawyers are Leveraging Automation to Better Manage Trust and Estate Administration

How Lawyers are Leveraging Automation to Better Manage Trust and Estate Administration

The Estateably Team
October 12, 2023

What happens when you’re asked to step out of your comfort zone? As a legal professional, you might shy away from casework outside your area of expertise. One way to bridge the gap is through the use of technology. Specialized legal software can give you the tools and confidence to tackle complex legal work in-house.

Trust and estate administration, in particular, can be daunting. But it doesn’t have to be. In this blog post, we’ll explore how Estateably’s automation tools help lawyers confidently manage tasks related to trust and estate administration.

What Makes Trust and Estate Administration So Complex?

Settling an estate or managing a trust is a complicated, often confusing process with plenty of moving parts. It’s no wonder that many people turn to experienced attorneys and law firms for help.

There’s a web of legislation to navigate and tax and accounting rules that vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. From the subtleties of charity tax compliance to preparing a final accounting, it’s a lot to take in. And the price for getting it wrong can be high. If you’re less than scrupulous about keeping separate bank accounts, for example, or reporting every financial transaction to an estate’s beneficiaries, you risk challenges, court appearances, and penalties.

How Estateably’s Software Solution Can Help

Estateably makes it simple to manage accounts and assets, and it all comes down to the power of automation. Here’s how the platform can streamline your practice and give your teams an edge at administering estates and trusts:

1. Document automation

When taking on trust and estate work, the form-filling alone is enough to make you think twice. Estateably’s document automation tools, however, make light work of data entry.

You only need to enter client or beneficiary information once, and the system will pull it into letters, court forms, and reports as appropriate. You can also extract transaction information from PDFs using DocuVision, Estateably’s proprietary AI-based text extraction tool, to cut down on manual data entry and eliminate the risk of human error.

The platform has a growing library of templates, covering a variety of documents in approved formats across multiple jurisdictions to streamline the process further. Compliance is built in, breaking down another barrier to tackling trust and estate work in your practice.

2. Collaboration tools

What do you do when faced with a long, complicated project? The key to embarking on any task confidently is to break it down into phases – and that’s exactly what Estateably’s collaboration tools help you do.

Task management software streamlines your workflows by assigning work to specific users, setting deadlines, and scheduling notifications to keep everyone on track. You can also integrate your internal approval flows to ensure compliance.

Document management tools facilitate smooth collaboration between teams. Documents are categorized and stored in the cloud so that colleagues can access relevant information at any time, from anywhere, with ease; all you need is a secure Internet connection. You can also set user permissions to restrict access to specific documents and monitor user activity.

3. Accounting

Governed by many rules and regulations, accounting is one of the biggest factors that might put you off trust and estate work. Estateably’s powerful accounting software streamlines the process and keeps you compliant.

The system demystifies inventory management, a key element of the estate administration process. For example, it tracks all of the estate’s assets and liabilities and can lookup the date of death stock and bond values instantly.

The platform also records and categorizes all the ongoing transactions in managing a trust, including dividend reinvestments. It can further simplify the process by calculating executor or trustee compensation, and incorporating these into accounting reports.

4. Report generation

Trust and estate paperwork doesn’t end with the first round of data entry. Fiduciaries have an obligation to keep beneficiaries and the courts updated with regular progress reports and accurate accountings.

Estateably’s software automatically generates various reports, from asset inventory snapshots to distribution schedules for beneficiaries and ongoing investment reports. It’s customizable, so you can include only the information you need for a particular audience, whether a dashboard summary for a client update or a formal accounting in a specific court format.

5. Ongoing training and support

Automation software is a great starting point when considering taking on a new field of legal work, but adopting a new platform isn’t the end of the story. At Estateably, we don’t simply leave you to plug in and get on with it; we offer continuing support to help you get the most out of our software and build your trust and estate expertise.

Our customer support team is on hand to answer any of your questions, whether you’ve just begun implementing the system or have been using it for a while. And since Estateably is cloud based, any upgrades, improvements, and new features will be delivered continually without needing in-house IT support.

To help you get started, we’ve created a series of guides and explainer videos that take you through every module of our platform, building up a framework of all the elements you need to start working in trust and estate administration. Our resources center features the latest news on topics including probate, estate litigation, and power of attorney, as well as comprehensive guides for trust and estate practitioners covering different jurisdictions across the US and Canada.

Expand Your Practice With Estateably

If you’re a legal professional who’s always handed over trust and estate cases to the specialists, now’s the time to explore Estateably’s intuitive solution. It has been designed to handle the manual, repetitive work associated with trust and estate administration, cutting through the complexity and making it easy to stay compliant.

Get in touch with us today, or request a demo to learn about automating trust and estate administration tasks at your practice.

More Articles