What Is A Trustee And What Are Their Responsibilities?

A trustee or trustees can be a single person, several people or even an establishment such as a bank, that is given the rights to manage the assets and/or investment for the interest of a grantor's chosen beneficiaries. In the case of some trusts, the grantor or owner of the property may appoint him or herself as the trustee during his or her lifetime. If a trust is set up in such a manner, then a successor trustee will also be named should the grantor become incapacitated or passes away.

If you have been appointed as a trustee, then here are some key rules and responsibilities you need to remember:

  • You can only act for and in the best interests of your grantor's beneficiaries if handling investments and assets belonging to the trust
  • A trustee's own assets and investments must stay separate from those of the trusts
  • Florida's trust law requires that beneficiaries of a trust receive notification and a copy of the documents
  • If a trust has multiple beneficiaries, you are required to treat each beneficiary in the same manner
  • Investments made on behalf of the trust should offer reasonable returns at a fraction of the risk
  • File yearly tax returns and keep precise records of all dealings

The duties of a trustee can be simple or complex depending on the provisions of the trust itself, and issues can arise when trustees choose not to seek out trust and estate administration advice from a qualified lawyer.

Reach out to me at my Pensacola law office, and let me, H. Frank Winn Jr., guide you through the trust administration process today. Call 850-462-3189 or schedule your free consultation using the online form on this site.