What Does It Mean To Be A Successor Trustee?

On Behalf of | Mar 23, 2016 | Firm News

When a trustee becomes incapacitated or dies, a successor trustee must take over. This makes the successor trustee responsible for fulfilling all of the trustee’s obligations, including maintaining records of any income the trust receives and keeping records of any expenses paid. In certain cases, a successor trustee must also file income tax returns and open a bank account on behalf of the trust.

Other obligations include:

· Obtaining authority to serve as trustee

· Complying with the trust’s terms

· Complying with all applicable laws

· Providing accountings to beneficiaries

· Adhering to notice requirements

· Finding and preserving trust assets

· Determining debts

· Making distributions

· Maintaining impartiality

This is just a short list of a successor trustee’s basic responsibilities. Depending on the type of trust, a successor trustee may also have other duties. There are many different kinds of trusts designed to serve a variety of purposes. Without the guidance of an experienced and knowledgeable trust lawyer, a successor trustee can make devastating and costly mistakes.

What If a Successor Trustee Doesn’t Want to Serve?

Serving as a trustee is a big responsibility. In the event a successor trustee has died or is unwilling or unable to serve, the first place to look is the trust document itself. In most cases, the terms of the trust dictate what happens if a successor trustee can’t fulfill his or her role. Otherwise, the probate court will determine who should administer the trust.

Minnesota Estate Planning and Probate Law Firm

Call the Minnesota probate and estate planning attorneys at Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC today our office today to learn more and to discuss your options.

This website has been prepared by Jeffrey P. Scott & Associates, LLC for informational purposes only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. The information is not provided in the course of an attorney-client relationship and is not intended to substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction.