What a Trustee Needs to Know About Making Final Distributions to Beneficiaries

Although beneficiaries of a trust will naturally have questions earlier on in the process, the concept of when they’ll receive their check or the assets set aside for them usually needs to be answered later on. Making distributions of remaining trust assets comes at the end of the process when a trustee is settling a revocable living trust.

This is because the successor trustee has to ensure that every single expense and fee associated with administering the trust or the related probate estate have been settled and that all taxes have been paid or money has been set aside to pay those final taxes and bills. If the trustee chooses to make distributions to the beneficiaries and expenses come up down the line, that person will then have to pay those expenses out of their own pocket.

If it is anticipated that the administration of the decedent’s trust will take longer than 12 months, the successor trustee might need to reach out for additional resources, such as hiring a trust attorney and an accountant.

This can ensure that enough assets are appropriately set aside to pay ongoing expenses of the trust and then allow for those final important distributions to be made to the beneficiaries of that document. Schedule a consultation today with a trust planning lawyer in Virginia Beach to learn more.

How Should I Choose My Trustee?

You know that a trust empowers you to accomplish a broader range of your estate planning goals, but a trust is only helpful as a tool when it’s been funded the right way and is managed by a knowledgeable trustee.

It’s an important decision to select the person who will be responsible for managing your trust on your behalf.

Depending on the kind of trust that you create with the help of your estate planning lawyer, the trustee will oversee the assets and the assets that will ultimately belong to your loved ones. Many people immediately default to choosing a family member or a friend as a trustee, but it can also make sense to choose a professional trustee, such as an accountant or an attorney.

One of the most important things to take into consideration as you select the person to serve in the trustee role is their individual traits. It goes without saying that a trustee should be trustworthy. He or she should also have a background in understanding your individual goals in creating the trust and what you hope to pass on or give to your family members as a result of establishing this estate planning vehicle. This person should also have some experience with financial management or handling legal instruments and documents, such as a trust.

Because this person will be so intricately involved in the management of your affairs when you are no longer around to dictate what that looks like, you need to feel confident in his or her ability to step in and manage them. Furthermore, the trustee that you select for your estate should be good with money and financially astute.

Make sure that you have an individual conversation with those people that you are thinking about appointing as a trustee so that they understand the roles and responsibilities and are comfortable serving in that manner.  For more help, contact our Virginia Beach law office today.