Choosing A Trustee? Make Sure They Exhibit These Characteristics

Choosing a Trustee can be a difficult and challenging task. If you are choosing a Trustee, here are some characteristics you may want to consider that will help assure your wishes and the closing of your estate are executed properly. 

A Trustee is a person named in a Trust and given the power to manage the assets titled in the name of a Trust agreement.  A Trustee can either be an individual or an institution, such as a bank or a trust company.    

 

LOYALTY & FAIRNESS

While choosing a Trustee, consider someone who will have the beneficiaries’ best interest in mind. The beneficiaries are those to whom the Trust estate will be distributed.  The Trustee needs to be fair minded enough to protect their interests in administering the Trust. 

For example, the Trustee might be faced with a sibling who lived with an aging parent and feels it would only be fair for them to remain in the house after the parent passes, while the terms of the Trust state the house should be distributed amongst all of the siblings equally.  

 

PRACTICALITY

Common sense is a very valuable character trait when it comes to administering an estate.  The Trustee will need to make practical decisions both when it comes to the care of the Trustors and to their estate when they die.  

 

ORGANIZATION

The Trustee needs to be organized. Duties such as paying Trust account balances and all bills, invoices and other documents are all part of their role as a Trustee. These tasks must be handled promptly and properly.

 

TOUGHNESS 

The Trustee will need to be tough-minded and strong willed enough to fend off greedy beneficiaries. They may also need to deal with all the red tape involved in administering a Trust and anything else that might not have been planned for in advance. 

 

CONCLUSION 

There is a lot to think about when considering who to choose as a Trustee. A Trustee must carry out all of his or her duties and responsibilities listed in the Trust itself, in addition to all of the fiduciary duties that must be fulfilled under the law.

Navigating a Trust can be overwhelming. Securing the advice of an experienced attorney can make the process less confusing and as stress-free as possible. If you have questions or need legal advice regarding your Trust, contact us today.

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