What you should know before accepting trusteeship

by | Nov 18, 2021 | Estate Planning

If someone asks you to be a trustee, that person trusts you to look out for his or her loved one. One individual can secure another individual’s finances in the event of death, and you will be the mediator who ensures this security.

Accepting trusteeship comes with a great deal of responsibility. While your duties can bring personal fulfillment, you should not take them lightly. It helps to understand your obligations before you agree to be a trustee.

Administering the trust

You must keep the beneficiaries’ wants and needs in mind while administering a trust. Distribution can become complicated when there is more than one beneficiary, but you must remain impartial. Keeping the trust property away from your own property, maintaining a record of everything and hearing out the beneficiaries should smoothen the process. If you keep all extenuating circumstances in mind, you are more likely to avoid trouble.

Sharing information

Once you accept the trust, or once the grantor renders it irrevocable (depending on which happens later), you must notify the grantees no more than 30 days after the fact. Heirs have the right to know about the trust’s management throughout the whole process. As long as the heir makes a request at a reasonable time, you should respond right away. You also must keep distributees in the loop by sending them an annual account of the trust’s principal or income.

There are cases where trusts are helpful in setting long-term family goals, and there are cases where trusts are downright essential for living. Regardless of its purpose, you should handle the trust with care for the sake of everyone involved.