Tips for choosing the right estate trustee

| Jun 12, 2019 | Estate Planning

Who do you trust to make decisions for you? Whether you operate a successful professional practice, hold lucrative real estate properties, or wish to preserve your legacy of charitable giving, entrusting someone else to manage your affairs is not a decision to be taken lightly.

Many who set up a trust wonder, “How can I be sure the person I choose is up to the task?”

Below are a few questions you can ask yourself to find the best trustee for your estate:

Can they remain impartial?

Many people first think to name either their spouse or a child as their trustee. However, keep in mind that part of a trustee’s job is to remain impartial while carrying out their responsibilities. In some cases, family dynamics can get in the way. On the other hand, family members often understand your interests and are unlikely to charge an administrative fee.

Are they open to taking on the role of trustee?

An effective trustee brings a combination of abilities to the table. They must have the financial savvy to important decisions, but more importantly – they must be willing to act as trustee. Far too many people name someone close to them as trustee of their estate without asking the other person first.

Will they ask for help if they need it?

Acting as trustee can be a daunting task. However, someone does not necessarily need to have decades of experience in finances to be successful. Often, it is better to choose someone who truly understands your priorities. An estate planning attorney can help them with:

  • Preparing for asset valuation
  • Addressing tax issues
  • Transferring title to property
  • Marshaling of assets

Choosing the right candidate to administer your trust requires careful thought. By following these tips, you can narrow the field to find the best person to preserve your legacy.