Take Initial Control of the Assets
The Trustee assures that all the assets have been properly transferred, or re-titled, into the name of the trust. They review the instructions in the trust agreement, and meet with the trust's creator, or the beneficiaries, to discuss their needs.
Assume the Administrative Duties
The Trustee transfers assets to the trust, takes inventory of them, sets up the recordkeeping tools, and obtains adequate insurance on insurable assets.
The Trustee will supervise and develop an investment management strategy framed by the needs of both current and future beneficiaries.
Make Payments to the Trust Beneficiaries
As dictated by the trust agreement, the Trustee exercises discretion in making distributions as authorized by the agreement.
File All the Necessary Tax Returns
The Trustee keeps a record of taxable income and the cost basis of all assets. They also furnish data to the CPA for the beneficiaries' annual tax returns as well as the trust tax returns.
Distribute the Trust Assets
The Trustee distributes the assets, calculates the proper share for the beneficiaries and arranges for the transfer of the trust's assets to them when the trust closes.
Once you and your attorney have decided that a trust would be a solution to your estate planning issues, what do you do next? Whatever the reason for establishing your trust, you will need to name a Trustee. As a start, you will want to choose a Trustee who understands your goals, and has the capability to follow your instructions to the letter.
Yes. You may be the initial Trustee or a husband and wife can be the first Co-Trustees. If you do that, however, you must consider who to name in the trust agreement as the Successor Trustee.
The Successor Trustee takes over the management of the trust after the death, resignation or incapacity of the first Trustee. If a non-professional was the first Trustee, the Successor Trustee will check to make sure all the assets that were supposed to be transferred into the trust, have been properly transferred.
The Trustee you choose to manage your trust may know a great deal about investing and diversifying the investments to reduce risk, or he may know very little! A trust agreement is merely a contract for the management of assets.
If you are considering using a Revocable Living Trust for your estate plan, and you are discussing the issue of who should be the Trustee with your attorney and family, then ask the following questions about the person, bank or trust company you are considering.
Ask these questions:
Vision Bank has been serving as a Trustee for our clients since 1942. We have several trust officers who collectively have 50 years of experience in trust management.
Professional Investment Management
The assets in your trust will be managed by investment specialists who will develop an asset allocation based upon your instructions in the trust agreement and the needs of your beneficiaries. Risk allocation and special assets like family owned businesses are of paramount concern.
Sometimes the family interests conflict. We recognize that in our role as Trustee, it is our responsibility to attempt to resolve conflicts without taking sides.
Delays in the administration of your trust may have detrimental or unexpected consequences. An individual trustee may die, go on extended vacations or become incompetent. Our experienced trust officers and staff are always available.
Contact our Trust Officers and schedule a free one-hour estate planning conference to discuss your estate plans. We do not write legal documents, but our experienced Trust Officers will discuss the options available to you and your family. We will provide you with brochures to read on important estate planning topics before you see your attorney.
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