Who Can Be The Executor and Trustee of A Will
One of the most important decisions you will ever make is deciding on the person (or individuals or institutions) that will be in charge of your assets after your demise. When you make a will, you can appoint an executor to administrate your will upon your demise. On the other hand, when you make a trust, you can appoint a trustee to act on your behalf once the trust is set up. These individuals are commonly referred to as fiduciaries, people legally obliged to act in your interest. The tasks of these individuals differ slightly so it’s important you discuss the factors which determine who is what?
More than one person can fulfill these roles: co-executors and co-trustees. This division of labor ensures that one person has the financial or legal expertise and the other is close to the family. It is, however, important to pick individuals who would be willing to work together and probably choose a successor in case either is unwilling to serve.
The executor of a will is the person responsible for managing the affairs of and planning the disbursement of the estate. His duties include initiating court procedures, manage affairs and expense of the estate, issuing notifications such as public notice of probate in newspapers and statutory notice to the beneficiaries, filing the deceased’s final tax returns and distributing assets to the beneficiaries. The trustee, on the other hand, offers a trustee service and is the legal owner of the trust asset. He is in charge of ensuring the properties are safe and under control, invest the trust assets (if applicable), administer the trust according to its terms, make any decisions that arise, find answers to any questions and communicate regularly with the beneficiaries.
When drafting a will, you can appoint any person above the age of 18 to be your executor, and you can even name a beneficiary as an executor, and it is quite common to find this happening. However, most persons tend to choose their spouse or civil partner as the executor of their will and up to four persons can act as a time as executor of the will although they have to act jointly so choosing maybe two is a good idea. One of them can be a family member and the other a professional like a lawyer or accountant?
People choose family members above the age of 18 as trustees for their assets usually because they may have a personal stake in the property hence they won’t charge a fee for their services. Using a family member is an especially smart move if the trust is small or medium sized. However, if the trust is quite large, then you might consider using a co-trustee with some financial or legal skills. You could also choose institutions or a body as trustee for your estate especially if they have prior experience in management of trusts.
It’s also considered a smart choice to use a professional trustee as they bring the advantage of expertise on the various laws and policies relating to estate planning and they are also neutrals in the administration of the estate, this make all beneficiaries and parties relating to the estate compliant with the policymakers wishes.
Who Are We?
We are a group of estate planners that provide a wide range of estate planning solutions to our clients. Our services includes will writing services. When you meet us for a consultation, we will guide you to choose your executor during your will writing process. We will also guide you and discuss with you the possibility of creating a trust if the situation is more complex.
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