Stillwater Lawyer / Importance of a Trustee

Importance of a Trustee

Are you looking to select a trustee for your trust? Learn the importance of a trustee in this video, then contact our Stillwater attorneys.




Question:

Why is it important to have a trustee in Oklahoma?

Answer:

An important reason to seek out a lawyer to help with estate planning and the creation a trust is that it provides structure and boundaries around family assets. This is particularly helpful and often necessary when a surviving parent is besieged with requests for money from children and grandchildren.

A surviving parent that’s older may be physically and emotionally vulnerable after the loss of their spouse. This is also a time when children, children’s’ spouses, and grandchildren may come around looking for financial gifts.

In today’s society, it’s a lot easier to ask for money than to have the discipline and patience to earn it and prepare for wants and needs. Unfortunately, many people would rather go with the quick fix and ask for a hand-out.

If you think you have a surviving parent that might be susceptible to undue influence by surviving children and their spouses, help them out. Find an attorney to serve as a trustee on behalf of their estate.

Having an attorney act as a co-trustee will help remove the burden from the surviving parent receiving financial requests. It’s not easy to say no to your children. They can be pretty persuasive, especially when you feel guilty that the other parent is not there to give you advice or counsel.

As an attorney, one of the things adult children often tell me after the death of a parent is, “Well, if my mom was here, she’d want me to do this. If my dad was here, he’d want me to do this.” That’s not always true. A knowledgeable attorney can avoid much of this type of manipulation with a carefully set up trust.

One of the practices I use to achieve this is having clients whose trusts I handle provide me with a video. I ask them a series of questions to clarify how they want this money to be cared for. I ask how they want the trustee to sprinkle money on their children and grandchildren. I ask what types of things they don’t want to see happen. I ask what things they absolutely do not want to fund.

By doing that, it gives the trustee an idea, but more importantly, the trustee can show those videos to these heirs and the heirs realize that this is what their father or mother wanted. It’s really a difficult world to navigate. There have never been so many different things a surviving spouse has to deal with. Having the right trustee handling one’s estate is an incredible help.


Are you or a loved one looking to plan your estate and have questions about the importance of a trustee? Contact a Stillwater estate planning attorney at Murray Law Firm today for a free confidential consultation and case evaluation. Let our experience work for you.

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