We're ready when you need help with trust administration.
If you’ve had a loved-one pass away and need help with their trust, the expert probate team at JacksonWhite offers extensive trust administration services.
When a trust is created, an individual will be designated as the trustee. This role is extremely important, as it will be their duty to ensure the assets are appropriately taken care of.
Specifically, a trustee’s role while managing a trust includes making legal, financial, and other administrative decisions needed to protect the assets in the trust. For instance, say one of the assets in the trust is a home that is rarely used. The trustee is in charge of ensuring that the property is maintained and that it does not fall into disrepair.
Essential Duties of Trust Administration
The following are some of the most important duties of a trustee:
- Inventory: Each asset in the trust must be identified and located. This also includes obtaining background documents for the assets, such as a deed or title.
- Valuation: Every asset in trust must be valued to help inventory and ensure the correct taxes are paid.
- Taxes: Trustees will need to file tax returns on behalf of the trust. To do this, the trustee must contact the IRS to obtain a taxpayer identification number.
- Updating: When assets are moved into a trust, the trust becomes the owner. This means titles for cars and deeds for homes need to be updated to name the trust as the new owner.
- Distribution: If the trust was set up to allow income or principal to be paid to beneficiaries, the trustee is in charge of making these payments.
Trust Administration After the Death of the Grantor
After the grantor passes away, the trustee will be tasked with distributing the assets in the trust according to the grantor’s wishes. Before doing this, the trustee should once again inventory every asset in the trust to ensure its location.
Then, the trustee should ensure they have the credentials to access assets such as investment and savings accounts. Once this has been done and any outstanding taxes have been paid, the trustee may begin distributing the assets according to the trust or will in place.
Get Help With Trust Administration in Arizona
Fiduciary duties for Arizona trustees include preserving trust funds, complying with state and federal law, and transferring assets to trust beneficiaries under the terms of the trust. Trust administration can become complex, and making a mistake may result in penalization of the trust and lawsuits brought against the trustee. To ensure this doesn’t happen to you, call Probate Attorney Ryan Hodges at (480) 467-4365 to discuss your case today.