The Role of a Successor Trustee
As part of establishing a revocable living trust, you should name a successor trustee. This is the person who will come in to manage and administer your trust for you upon your passing, or upon your incapacitation or unavailability to handle your affairs.
Your trustee should be someone you can trust to manage your affairs, and who will be capable of carrying out the many duties associated with the role. Here’s a quick overview of some of the responsibilities your chosen trustee will have:
- Locating all trust assets and keeping them safe and organized until distribution of assets can occur
- Collecting all insurance policies, retirement accounts and annuities that have named your living trust their primary beneficiary
- Identifying creditors and paying off any debts owed
- Working with the personal representative of your estate if any items must pass through probate (your personal representative and trustee may be the same person, depending on the choices you made)
- Paying ongoing expenses associated with trust administration until the trust is terminated
- Preparing and filing all income and estate tax returns that are required for your estate
- Raising the necessary funds to pay off your owed debts and to cover the ongoing expenses of trust administration and tax liabilities, if the value of your estate is not sufficient
- Investing and managing trust assets until they can be passed down to your chosen beneficiaries, especially in the case of minors
- Obtaining appraisals of real estate and business interests to determine the date of death values for your trust assets
For more information about the responsibilities of a successor trustee, contact an experienced Tampa, FL estate planning attorney at BaumannKangas Estate Law.