Any time you consider creating a trust, you will have to make some important decisions. In addition to selecting the property to transfer to the trust, as well as deciding who the beneficiaries will be, you will have to select a trustee to manage the trust property.
In some trusts, such as a revocable living trust, selecting the trustee is easy, as you typically select either yourself or another family member. In other trusts, such as a testamentary trust, you may have to choose someone else to serve as trustee. You should consult with your attorney about your options when choosing a trustee, but here are a couple of tips that may help you.
With a testamentary trust the property you transfer to that trust is typically used to benefit certain family members, such as grandchildren, adult children, or others. You may, in this situation, want to choose a family member to act as trustee over the trust. While this allows you to minimize management costs, it may not be a good idea if there is family conflict present.
Trust companies, a bank’s trust department, and other organizational trustees who have experience managing trusts are another option you might consider. While the fees for these organizational trustees are sometimes significant, they could be a good choice if you want to prevent family conflicts. Also, if the trust will last for generations or longer, the organizational trust can easily handle managing the trust over a long period of time.
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