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How can I choose a reliable trustee for my estate?

| Sep 4, 2018 | Estate Planning |

Many people in Columbus choose to make a trust a part of their estate plans. While these documents are certainly beneficial for avoiding probate, you must make sure that you choose the trustee carefully. This person will be responsible for overseeing the affairs of your estate after you’re gone, which takes quite a bit of responsibility. Because this decision is so crucial, AARP offers the following advice.

Consider a corporate trustee

Corporate trustees include banks and financial services. The upside to having a corporate trustee is you can rest assured that they will be available (unlike an individual, whose availability can be far less predictable over time). However, this will be the more expensive option since corporate trustees charge fees for services rendered. Also, because corporate trustees must answer to shareholders the decisions made on your behalf might not always be in your best interest.

Keep age & health in mind

If you do select an individual, keep age and general health in mind. Of course, it’s important that you pick someone with a sufficient amount of business knowledge and common sense regarding the process. Bear in mind that no matter how qualified a person is they won’t be any help to you if they’re deceased or unavailable due to illness. You can also choose a backup trustee to ensure your estate will be covered after you’re gone.

Review your selection when necessary

Even if you’re extremely happy with your choice, it helps to review your pick every few years or so. Major life changes often impact a person’s ability to be a reliable trustee, and you want to make sure you’re still comfortable with this person after so long. You also want to keep in mind the affect new marriages or divorces could have. If your trustee dies their new spouse could be left overseeing your affairs, which you might not be entirely comfortable with.

 

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