Can Trustees of My Trust Require that I Give Them My Medical Records?

 In Special Needs Planning, Trustee
trustee right to information

Photo by DJ Johnson on Unsplash


Do the trustees of my dad’s legacy trust need my medical records, along with my benefits letter?


Perhaps, though that does sound a bit intrusive. While I haven’t seen the trust, it sounds like it was set up to provide for your needs. The question is how are the trustees to determine your needs. Your medical situation and your income could be important information for the trustees.

However, I’ve served as trustee for dozens of trusts over the years and I’ve never asked for such records. A conversation with beneficiaries about their current needs, their likely future needs, and their financial situation is usually sufficient for the trustees to make determinations about distributions. They must also consider the resources of the trust and the interests of other beneficiaries, whether current or future.

The only reason to request the kind of documentation the trustees are seeking in your case is if they have reason to believe that you are not being honest with them or they’re simply having difficulty understanding your situation. In either case, they may need to take extra steps to determine your actual circumstances. The request for your medical records seems especially unnecessary and intrusive. Presumably, the trustees are not medical professionals and would not have the expertise to interpret them. The request for your benefits letter seems more appropriate.

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