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What to do if you are a successor trustee

On Behalf of | Jan 16, 2020 | Probate & Estate Planning |

Many people in Gainesville and Northeast Georgia are looking for the right way to deal with their property after they pass away. You may want to make sure that your loved ones are provided for while avoiding probate court and the fees and delays that may be included with the process. You may also want a greater level of control and flexibility when making decisions about your estate. These are some of the reasons why you may consider handling a great deal of your overall estate plan through a trust. With a revocable living trust, you can continue to manage your own assets while alive and name a trusted loved one as successor trustee.

The role of a successor trustee

Trusts can be a beneficial option because of the higher level of privacy and flexibility they offer, allowing an estate to avoid probate court and the transference of property directly. Some people may not know what their next steps should be, however, if they are named as successor trustee. In some cases, a successor trustee may take over in case the trust’s creator is incapacitated while in other circumstances, they may only take over upon the trust owner’s death. Some people may need medical evidence in order to show that the original trust creator is too incapacitated to manage the assets.

How to manage the trust

The successor trustee can make an affidavit to affirm his or her new role and designation, committing to follow the law and the terms of the trust. Then this individual can begin to administer the trust. This can include selling or transferring real estate, investments and other property. When signing over the deed to real estate, a successor trustee should also include evidence that his or her signature reflects the full authority of the trust, the owner in record of the land.

If you are considering a trust as a tool for planning your estate, it can be important to communicate with other family members about their expectations and interests going forward. An estate planning and probate attorney may advise people and draft a trust for the future as well as assisting named successor trustees in navigating their role.


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