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What New Family Trustees Need To Know

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When a family member or friend asks you to become their trustee, it conveys a high level of trust in you. However, many of our clients tell us that they did not fully understand the enormity of the job when they accepted it.

The role of a trustee is to act as a custodian for the assets held within a trust. The job also includes reporting responsibility as well as the administration and distribution of trust assets on behalf of the beneficiaries. Since trustees are fiduciaries, they can be held personally liable for any breach of that duty.

Understanding the role and responsibilities of a trustee is an essential part of accepting this job. Yet those involved in the creation or drafting of wealth transfer vehicles are reluctant to discuss the roles and responsibilities and liabilities of the trustee. This article examines the key information a trustee should know when deciding whether or not to take on this responsibility.

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