Inherent responsibilities involved in trust administration

When a beloved friend or relative dies, it is seldom easy to process. Though death is part of life, it often takes an emotional toll on those laying loved ones to rest. In some situations, one who is grieving may also face certain inherent responsibilities and obligations if named as a key figure in trust administration for the decedent. Georgia residents accepting such responsibilities will want to make certain they clearly understand their positions.

Being chosen as a trustee is similar to being placed in a position of management. Those who execute living trusts tend to choose others they think of as trustworthy, responsible and dependable as successor trustees. Those named as such become trustees should the grantor become incapacitated or deceased.

At the specified time, the successor trustee would take control of business transactions, as well as carry out all provisions and mandates of the trust. Often, the person named as a successor trustee is also listed as a beneficiary. Other times, however, grantors may choose an independent successor trustee and compensate that individual for his or her work.

When one has been given such an important role in the trust administration of a loved one's estate in Georgia, it is typically prudent to seek guidance from an experienced probate and estate administration attorney before proceeding. Doing so can provide clarification on state and federal laws. It can also help one to make informed decisions regarding filing a will in a timely manner, if applicable, and other steps that need to be taken when acting as manager of another person's trust assets.

Source:, "Trust Administration Basics - Part 1 of 3", Marlene S. Cooper, Jan. 27, 2016

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