How do I choose a successor trustee?

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If you are the trustee of a living trust, you may like the idea that you can control the assets held within the trust. However, it’s an unfortunate reality that you may not be around to manage the property in the trust. As such, you may wonder who will take over in the event you pass away or become incapacitated. Luckily, you can choose a successor trustee. If unsure how to make this decision, the following blog explores what you can know about this matter. You’ll also discover how PA trust attorneys can guide you through this process.

What is a successor trustee?

There are many reasons that you may want to establish a living trust, but most commonly, this is done to avoid probate. However, you must consider what would happen to your trust in the event you become incapacitated or pass away. As such, you should name someone in the trust to assume your role.

Essentially, this person will take over your role, and continue doing anything you would do with your trust, like paying bills or making financial decisions. In this instance, the trustee will act privately. Essentially, this means they do not have to be supervised by the court like an executor does when they start distributing a will.

How should I choose a successor?

When you think about who should be your successor, there are many things you must consider. Many people’s first instinct is to choose a friend or family member. While this may be a good option, you should carefully think about the personality and characteristics of what makes a good successor and compare that to your options.

Generally, the most important thing to take into consideration is how trustworthy and reliable your opinions are. Managing a trust requires a considerable amount of responsibility. As such, choosing a cousin who was once fired for fraud may not be in your best interest.

Additionally, you’ll want to ensure the person has enough time to commit to handling your assets. If they have an incredibly demanding job or large family, it may not be feasible for them to take over control of your trust fund if you are unable to manage it.

Why do I need an attorney for this process?

Though choosing a successor trustee may seem simple enough, ensuring you have an attorney help you through this process is critical. They can help you use the correct language in your document to guarantee that the individual understands their role and responsibility. Additionally, they can help ensure that the trustee is compensated from the fund for the work they do if that’s something you wish to consider.

At Friedman Schuman, our team understands how complex trusts can be. That’s why we are dedicated to doing everything in our power to assist you through these matters. Connect with our team today to learn how we can help you create a trust that reflects your wishes.

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