If you have been named someone’s trustee of their trust or executor of their will, below are some helpful hints for acting in those positions:
- You should have a copy of their documents and know where the originals are kept.
- You have the fiduciary responsibility as trustee to secure any trust property. Make sure that no one has access to it until there is either a court order directing distributions (if a will) or until you arrange for distributions as required by the trust (if a trust). This includes maintaining insurance policies on any property.
- You should have access to contact information for all persons named in the decedent’s documents. They will have to be notified if they are beneficiaries and having this information prior to the decedent passing — or at least being included with the estate planning documents — is helpful.
- As soon as you have death certificates (which are obtained from the funeral home/crematory), make an appointment with an estate planning/probate attorney. This is crucial to ensure that proper notices are sent to beneficiaries and creditors if required. The attorney should also walk you through your obligations as executor/trustee.
DISCLAIMER: This is not intended to be legal advice, but for informational purposes only. There is no attorney/client relationship that can be inferred from this information. If you have specific questions regarding your case, feel free to contact Borg Law Group.