In the typical scenario, a client will appoint a spouse, child, sibling or close friend as Trustee to administer their Trust upon their incapacitation or death. However, we regularly come across the atypical scenario: when there is no one capable enough to serve.
We always say that your fiduciary should be BOTH responsible and trustworthy. You can’t have one without the other. Why? Because the role of Trustee is very serious. Some of the duties of a Trustee include: safeguarding and distributing assets; managing investments; filing and paying taxes; maintaining and selling real estate; communicating with attorneys, accountants, financial advisors, insurance agents and other professionals; maintaining records and preparing accounts for beneficiaries. You need someone to fulfill these duties who is willing, competent, detail-oriented and impartial.
In some scenarios, a client may have a relative that is trustworthy but not responsible and vice-versa. What options do you have in this case? Who can you run to? In steps the PROFESSIONAL TRUSTEE (think, a Bank). While it may not be advisable in some situations, the professional trustee can be the best choice in others. Professional trustees have the requisite experience, knowledge, wherewithal and objectivity needed for such an important role. And while there are costs associated with a professional trustee, if you do not have a relative or close reliable friend that you can trust, it will be worth it in the long run.
One of the first steps in protecting your assets is making sure you have the appropriate documents in place, in other words- the “what”. However, just as important is the “who”. This is a very important decision to make! Contact C&G to assist you today!
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