Making a wise choice now can save trouble later. When creating an estate plan, you want to minimize infighting among beneficiaries if often a top priority. One good way to do this is to choose a trustworthy, competent fiduciary.
"Fiduciary" is a general term for someone you designate to manage your affairs for you in the event of your death or incapacity, such as an Executor or Trustee.Your fiduciary has a special duty to do what is best for you and your estate and must follow the distribution scheme established by your Will or Trust. Your fiduciary should be someone you trust completely.
You should also consider other factors, such as:
If you do not have a trusted individual to appoint, there are many other options available to you. A trust company, bank, attorney, or other professional fiduciary may be the right choice for you. You may be asking yourself what the difference is between individual and corporate fiduciaries.
Both types of fiduciaries offer benefits that may be right for you, depending on your individual situation. An individual fiduciary may cost less than a corporate or professional fiduciary. While all fiduciaries are entitled to compensation for the work they do, a friend or family member may choose to waive compensation.
However, the person may be inexperienced in financial management, emotionally tied to the trust distributions, or simply too busy to properly administer your trust or estate.
On the other hand, a corporate or professional fiduciary will be paid reasonable compensation, or a statutory rate set by state law. In exchange for this, your trust beneficiaries receive the additional safeguards that a professional fiduciary can provide such as:
Nearly all banks have a trust department, and there are many professional fiduciary services to choose from. When choosing a professional or corporate fiduciary, consider the person's experience, availability, and knowledge.
Our firm offers fiduciary services, including will and trust administration, for clients upon request. The firm's principal, Jasen E. Cassady, Esq., has several years of experience dealing with trusts and estates. He is also a Certified Financial Planner® with many years of financial experience. Please call our office today if you would like more information about your fiduciary, or if you would like to hear about our trust and estate administration services.