Asset Planning, Inc Blog

The latest from the team.

The Importance of Choosing the Right Trustee


More and more people are realizing the importance of setting up a trust for their estate. Having a trust in place insures that your wishes for your estate are carried out on your terms if you become unable to care for yourself or pass away. It also prevents your assets from going into probate after your death and saves a huge headache for your heirs. While having a trust in place is very important it is also very important who you name as the trustee.

There are a few different options when selecting a trustee. The most common scenario is that a married couple sets up a living trust where they are both listed as trustees and they list a child or family member to become the successor trustee. In the case that one spouse passes before the other the living spouse will become the sole trustee until they are incapable of caring for themselves or they pass away. At that point the successor trustee in charge of handling the estate duties.

The responsibilities of managing an estate are many and can be daunting to someone who lacks experience in these types of situations. When choosing your trustee you should choose someone who is (a) willing to dedicate the time and energy to run the estate (b) responsible and possesses good judgement and (c) someone who can be objective when following the instructions set up in the trust. It may seem like the natural choice to choose your child or a family member to act in this role but it may not be the best choice depending on the complexity of your estate and their abilities.

In the case where a person is unsure of who to name as a trustee an estate attorney will usually suggest that a bank be set up as the trustee to carry out the responsibilities of the trust. This is called a corporate trustee. This seems like a good idea because a bank has experience with handling trusts and wealth management. But this is not always the best choice either. When the duties of a trustee are needed the bank will take over the trust, move your assets from whatever accounts you have them set up in now to investments of their choosing and will take over the estate. They will follow the instructions in the estate as wished but it may leave your family without the feeling of a personal connection since they may not have worked with that bank before or know the person handling the assets.

Did you know that you have another option that will help ease the burden on your loved ones by running the estate themselves? There is something called an administrative trustee. In a lot of cases we see a child take over the duties of the estate and get overwhelmed with the process. They may be doing it free of charge but in the long run trying to take care of everything on their own ends up costing more financially and emotionally. An administrative trustee is a company that is set up to handle all of the time consuming paperwork and filing responsibilities of the estate. They do not make any decisions as far as wealth management is concerned. That is still the responsibility of the trustee and their financial advisor. Yes, there is a fee to have an administrative trustee but it can outweigh the stress and headaches that come along with trying to do everything yourself.

The best thing to do is have an open discussion with your family, estate attorney and financial advisor. Make your goals and wishes for the estate clear and set up the trustee that you think will be the best fit for your personal situation. By doing this you will have the peace of mind knowing that your wishes will be followed and that your family will be taken care of in the way that you want.

Continue reading
  1042 Hits
1042 Hits

Search Blogs Module

Wait a minute, while we are rendering the calendar
tax filing deadlines 70 1/2. 20 year anniversary Medicare Part B premiums account numbers retirement plans spring cleaning email notifications ID card Joey Gonzales September 30 2020. Roth IRA 2017 Equifax breach parking spots Coronavirus Aid National Ice Cream month 2017 TD Ameritrade National LINC Conference trust pet privacy settings holidays approach California Lions Friends prescription eyeglasses clients IRS deadline spam phone identity theft Mobile Banking Security Tips notary services cell phone provider retirement accounts Labor Day cell phone carriers retirement clone counterfeits partner /owner 2017 IRA contributions home home emergency preparedness kits family members padlock donation counts Social Security February 14 CA FTB fees retirement planning credit card fraud Brexit vote home break-ins EEChecklist-Kits.pdf stockpilingchecklist.pdf phishing scams emergency kits pet industry client portal Fox News story Part D premiums . Kiplinger Letter July 3 rd policy Medicare Advantage April 11 Supplemental Security Income Amazon Open Enrollment phishing sites money records emergency folder business hours house sitter fun atmosphere Affordable Care Act https ://seekingalpha Medicare question payments breach gap insurance TD Ameritrade September 8 self-help topics water … life saver Wells Fargo employees tax deadline Puerto Rico estate planning direction estate planning rescue organizations scams tax deadlines stimulus package Notary Public cell phone service provider Part B news coverage home emergency kit home mortgages team members donation items documents Charles Schwab non-prescripstion sunglasses Treasury Department earthquake app chip-enabled EMV cards items cell phone carriers offer Federal Trade Commission website consumer spending Auto insurance FEMA website pet donation drive pet supplies paperwork clutter debt CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER exam information Facebook ice cream event Open House assets Wells Fargo customers Medicare plan Social Security Administration fun facts https :// Financial Planning Magazine Shred paperwork wells Fargo Victor Dergunov COVID -19 virus market turmoil July 6 401K vision screening company phone companies VOIP landline phones FSA banking summer Facebook profile earnings fallout ice cream asset Planning operations manager web address text messages credit monitoring service June 29 card reader Medicare stock pile CFP ® home security Erin Nelsen cell phones IRS health care services car loans September 9 emergency kit Medicare Part B hurricane Dorian July 4 DNA test kits CARES Act Flexible Spending Account years identity thieves media accounts markets credit freeze Legal robocalls tax season Orange County Two-Step Verification tax returns Ice Cream Social check lists drive /usb interest rates offering insurance January 10 disaster areas information October 1 2020. settlement options Economic Security relief efforts illiegal robocallers pets birth certificates Orange County Superior Court Kraig Mathias app 900 number Independence Day April 15 estate phone clients show support toilet paper trustee people medications credit score insurance policies Healthcare president Trump official certification credit cards 2018 IRA contributions April 18 2017. 23 andme contribution limit interest health care costs credit card company flash drive spread increase 4 pm -8pm vacation driver license jury duty investment statements coronavirus blog post portal privacy notices integral member paper records “ skimmer ”. opt-out Retirement Contribution Limits IRA accounts tax records D premiums student loans insurance policy checklists Asset Planning borrowing money July weekend executive order memorial Day weekend bottom line cell phone SIM swap scam Expired medications