Trust Administration?

The Five Attributes For Picking A Trustee

Edited by Rory Clark

Congratulations, you’ve agreed to build your estate plan. However, you are stumped as to whom you should appoint as your trustee. While many of us are clear about who our beneficiaries will be, we are still at a loss about who should step into our estate’s pivotal role. Choosing the right trustee is as easy as remembering the acronym T.R.U.S.T. Continue below to read about the attributes for picking a trustee.


Select trustees whom you think will exercise good, reasonable, compassionate, and sound judgment. A bank representative, financial advisor, attorney, accountant, spouse, child, close friend, a trusted relative are included in the suggestions. 


One of the first considerations should be selecting a responsible person. A trustee does not need to have unique expertise, but the person you pick must be accountable. A person who is not careful with their affairs is not likely to be cautious with your matters. Therefore responsibility involves having sound judgment, objectivity, being attentive, and having the common sense to know when to ask for help if needed. 

Useful and Around to Act

Your trustee must have the capacity to act as your trustee: are they old enough? Or are they too old? The ability to serve as a trustee means your choice for this role must have the capacity to act.

Skills Needed

A good trustee possesses a combination of specific attributes and abilities. You should feel confident that the trustee you select will provide this combination of skills over time. Attributes to consider are impartiality, integrity, and the ability to be discreet regarding confidential and sensitive information. Administratively, the trustee may need to maintain detailed records, process transactions, prepare income tax returns for the trust, and generate statements and annual accounts. 

Time and Location

Being a trustee or executor can sometimes be time-consuming, especially if location or distance is an issue. Quite possibly, your trustee selection has its own busy life. Complete with job and family obligations. That is why it is critically important to have your estate plan in place to make things easy and uncomplicated as possible for your trustee, no matter where they reside.

No Magic Involved

There is no magic key for selecting a trustee or successor trustee. However, what is critical is that you have the proper documents in place to guide your appointed trustee. Seek guidance from an Elder Law attorney for help.

Let The Legacy Elder Law Center help you create your trust and any other estate planning documents to provide peace of mind for you, your family, and your trustee. Contact us today at (703)-988-7975.

About the author

Rory Clark

Rory has more than 30 years’ experience practicing elder law, estate planning, asset protection, Veteran’s affairs, and special needs planning. Through his personal journey, Rory not only understands the complex legal issues involved as a professional but also the intense emotional issues as a caregiver.

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