Choosing The Right Trustee

In previous posts, we discussed the importance of having a complete estate planning package. As a reminder, this includes having a power of attorney, a medical power of attorney, a will, and a revocable trust. One of the critical components of having a trust is that you have to designate and choose a trustee. Before you can do so, you must understand what their roles and responsibilities are. This is important because before you put a name to paper, you should discuss with the person you choose to discover whether they are willing to accept the position. 

They may have questions and concerns before accepting the role, and you should be able to speak to those. Furthermore, there is also the possibility that someone may ask you to be a trustee for them. Regardless, you will be prepared for either circumstance. 

Who Should I Choose?

The first choice of a Trustee for most people is a friend or a family member. Don’t immediately assume that the person you trust the most is the only candidate. In the next section, we will elaborate on this person’s responsibilities. Choose the person who can meet the demands of the job. Depending on your family, you should consider where the person you select can work well with your beneficiaries. One of the key benefits of having an estate plan is not leaving behind a mess that could instigate a fight among your family members. 

Another thing that some people may need to be made aware of is that your trustee is entitled to reasonable compensation. In other words, some people would be willing to take on this role for you. It is common to have attorneys serve as your trustee, and some companies do this as well. The amount they charge differs, but it is something to consider and discuss with your attorney. 

What Are Their Responsibilities?

You will hear the term “fiduciary” used when talking about trusts. Though this word applies to more than estate planning, it is someone who has an ethical or legal obligation to at least one person. In this scenario, the trustee executes your wishes and is obligated to the beneficiaries of it. Trustees should also have a team of professionals to help them properly administer the Trust. Some of the duties and responsibilities of a Trustee are: 

  • Documenting and maintaining records
  • Filing taxes
  • Being available to the beneficiaries
  • Distributing the contents of the trust per the directions you provided
  • Possibly investing the assets in the trust 
  • Maintaining and preserving the trust’s assets

Create Your Trust and other Estate Planning Documents with ElDeiry & ElDeiry, P.A. 

Come and discuss your goals with us, and let ElDeiry & ElDeiry, P.A. build a complete estate plans based on your wishes and intentions. Estate planning is a selfless act done for those you leave behind. Contact us today to schedule your consultation.

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