When you’re setting up a trust, you may be focused on the beneficiary and how the trust will affect them. But it’s also very important to carefully consider who you choose as the trustee. They are the one who will actually distribute the payments and make sure that your instructions are followed.
What should you look for? Every situation is unique, but here are three key areas to keep in mind.
If you are allowing the trustee to use their discretion, then you need someone who has similar values and will make decisions you would approve of. But even if you’re giving explicit instructions – such as telling them only to authorize payments for college tuition costs – you still want someone who agrees with your perspective and will uphold those regulations.
It is not necessary to choose someone as a trustee who is a financial expert. However, they do have to have a certain amount of financial intelligence. They need to understand different types of monetary accounts and they may need to be familiar with investing. Don’t pick someone who has absolutely no experience and won’t be able to do this job.
Honesty and trustworthiness
Finally, you just need someone you can trust. You need to know that they’re going to follow your instructions and that they will be honest about the way that they use the money, always focusing on the beneficiary’s best interests and not using the account for their own financial gain.
Once you determine who you want to choose as the trustee, it’s time to get the account set up. Take the time to look into all of the proper legal steps.