|Choosing the Right Trustee
The reasons for establishing a trust are as many and varied as the people who establish them:
• Peace of mind.
• Relief from the responsibilities of managing your assets
• Consistent, ongoing asset management
• Contingency planning
• Charitable giving
Trusts can accomplish an almost unlimited number of asset management and financial planning objectives. However, when you set up a trust, you should be aware that your trust is only as effective as the trustee who manages and administers it. Carefully consider whom you choose.
What should you consider when choosing a Trustee
While each trust is unique, most people who set up trusts have common concerns. These are what must be considered when choosing a trustee for your trust.
Permanence and reliability
When choosing a trustee, first look for stability. By choosing a professional, rather than a family member, you can be sure your trustee will always be available to serve. A professional trustee won't get too involved in personal or business matters to give your trust the proper attention, move away, or die as an individual trustee might.
Investment management expertise
Your trustee should have the skills, knowledge, and resources to invest your assets and manage them properly. A good trustee will go over your investment goals with you and build a long-range investment plan to meet your trust goals.
Certainly, expertise is required to effectively administer a trust. Moreover, your trustee also must be willing to take the time to attend to even the smallest detail.
Competence and experience
Competence is what makes one trustee more effective than another. It comes with knowledge of the trust administration process and experience with that process.
Serving as a Trustee is no simple task
When choosing a trustee, you need to know that your trustee will be ready to serve when called upon. You may choose an individual, a relative, friend or financial advisor, as long as that person has reached the age of majority and is not legally disqualified from serving. Or you may choose a professional fiduciary, such as Englewood Bank & Trust.
How much authority you give your trustee depends on the trust document you and your attorney prepare. You may give your trustee very broad or very limited powers. In either case, your trustee, as a fiduciary, is held by law to a strict standard of care in performing trust functions.
You should be comfortable with your choice.
When it comes to serving as trustee, we are experts. We are also recognized for our investment capabilities and our willingness to design investment plans suited to each person's unique needs and objectives. We are local and available to provide highly professional and personal trust services.
A Trustee’s Responsibilities
Your trustee’s exact powers and duties will depend on the instructions in your trust agreement. But, in general, your trustee will:
• Hold trust property
• Invest trust assets
• Distribute trust income and/or principal to the beneficiaries, as directed in the trust agreement
• Make tax decisions concerning the trust
• Keep records of all trust transactions
• Issue statements of account and tax reports to the trust beneficiaries
• Explain the trust’s operation to the beneficiaries
• Answer questions the beneficiaries may have concerning trusts
• If your trust is a Trust under Will, make reports to the probate court when necessary
Englewood Bank & Trust is committed to meeting the complete financial needs of its customers and clients through the availability of a variety of estate and trust services. We are proud to have a full-service Personal Trust Department available, based in Charlotte County, Florida.
We are ready to help you plan your financial future. Please call for your confidential, no-obligation appointment, today!
Investments are not a deposit or other obligation of, or guaranteed by, the bank, are not FDIC insured, not insured by any Federal government agency, and are subject to investment risks, including possible loss of principal.