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Trust Administration can be a huge undertaking. While it’s usually considered an honor to be appointed the Trustee in charge of this process, we also know it carries with it a long list of responsibilities.
What Is Trust Administration?
Trust Administration is the process of carrying out the details of a Trust as specified by the Trustor. It is the Trustee’s fiduciary responsibility to make sure that he is acting in compliance with what’s entailed in the Trust document.
The Trustee is required to administer the Trust impartially, even and especially if he himself is a beneficiary. The fair management of the assets in the Trust is one of the most important requirements of the Trustee. In addition, the Trustee is also responsible for making sure beneficiaries are given what their entitled to based on provisions of the Trust, file income tax returns, notify creditors, and pay annual estate taxes.
It’s not surprising that most Trustees report that they feel overwhelmed by this new found job. Most people are not financially or legally inclined, and the complexities of Trust Administration can be dizzying.
One way to get organized is to start a Trust Administration Checklist. While there is no universal list, a list comprised of basic administration might be helpful. A qualified Estate Planning attorney can help Trustees create this list, as well as explain the legal and financial responsibilities of the trustee. Find out how recruiting the help of financial and legal experts is considered a Trust expense and can be covered by the Trust.
Trust Administration does not have to be difficult but it does take some time. Our free Report “Trust Administration: Prior Planning Prevents Problems” can help you understand what’s expected of the trustee, as well as trustee liabilities. Created by some of the industry’s most influential thought leaders, this report covers basic Trust Administration information and Trustee duties.
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