Understanding fiduciary duty begins with understanding the idea of a fiduciary relationship. These types of relationships exist when two parties enter a transaction, and one party trusts another to act in their best interests. More specifically, the law describes a fiduciary relationship as “any relation existing between parties to a transaction wherein one of the parties is in duty bound to act with the utmost good faith for the benefit of the other party.”
The relationship is considered to have officially begun once the party designated as the fiduciary begins to knowingly act on behalf of the other party. Once the relationship begins, the fiduciary is required to:
Fiduciaries can exist in many different fields and industries and within many different types of relationships. Regardless of the relationship, there are three main duties that the fiduciary is responsible for, including the use of reasonable care, a duty of confidentiality, and undivided loyalty. Some of the common fiduciary arrangements include the following:
These types of relationships, and others like them, carry the responsibilities of fiduciary relationships and must make sure that they do so in an honorable way. Unfortunately, not all fiduciary relationships honor the duties that they are to uphold, and they find themselves in violation of their obligations. When this occurs, there is a breach of fiduciary duty which is grounds for filing a claim.
There are a few different ways to identify breaches in fiduciary duty. However, these relationships simply boil down to the principle that people should treat each other the way they wish to be treated. When someone takes advantage of their position and acts in a way that seeks to harm another financially, this is considered a breach of fiduciary duty.
When you believe another person has breached their fiduciary duty, you have a right to seek legal action by filing a claim in civil court. The plaintiff must show the following to prove there has been a breach of fiduciary duty:
If a plaintiff can prove these, then they may be entitled to damages paid by the defendant. These damages may not only be compensatory but could also include amounts for punitive damages.
The different types of fiduciary misconduct can be difficult to identify as not all actions that cause a breach in an agreement result in a loss. The following are examples of fiduciary breaches:
When these breaches occur in Los Angeles, CA, they can come at a significant loss to the beneficiary. Filing a claim for violations is a way to further protect yourself and decrease the risk of additional personal loss.
Knowing what to expect in a fiduciary lawsuit can help you prepare whether you are the plaintiff or the defendant. Your first step should always be to seek the help of an experienced and knowledgeable attorney who can review the elements of the case. These elements include the trial, litigation, an arbitration agreement, and any possible mediation routes that could avoid the courtroom.
Many fiduciary claims in Los Angeles are intricate and could involve any number of individuals or corporations. These types of claims could take months to settle, but you may need to prepare for even longer. Anytime you feel you were a victim of a breach of fiduciary duties, you should begin your claim as soon as possible. The more quickly you act, the sooner you’ll gain resolution.
When someone violates their fiduciary duty, they are not only hurting the beneficiary, but they are also breaching the trust of those who have placed responsibility on them. Fortunately, there is legal recourse to hold those who breach their duties responsible for the actions they choose to take. You should immediately contact an experienced and knowledgeable attorney who will help you navigate the complicated claims process against them if you are in a fiduciary relationship with another individual or party and feel they have breached their agreement with you.
Should your claim be successful, you can recover damages caused by their breach as well as push for punitive damages for their maliciousness. Contact the attorneys at Blake & Ayaz for a free consultation to discuss your claim.