Appointing multiple trustees to your special needs trust

On Behalf of | Oct 30, 2019 | Estate Planning

When you plan a special needs trust, assuming you are not going to act as a trustee, choosing a trustee will be a crucial choice. However, your choice may not be an easy one since your trustee needs to have the best interests of your relative in mind. Fortunately, it is not necessary to simply designate one person in North Carolina to serve as a trustee. A special needs trust can be administered by multiple trustees, also known as co-trustees.

According to Forbes, a special needs trust can be overseen by a collection of trustees. If a person chooses, he or she may set up a special needs trust with a coalition of co-trustees that can be made up by family members. Alternatively, perhaps because other family members are not available or are inexperienced, you can decide to add professionals you trust as co-trustees. You might select a financial adviser or a financial institution to act as a co-trustee.

When you set up your co-trustee relationships, you can divide up the responsibilities of managing the trust. As Kiplinger explains, you may decide to have a co-trustee specifically tasked with handling the records or making investments. This can be helpful if you have someone acting as a trustee that knows your loved one well but is inexperienced in handling financial matters or investing money. You can bring in someone to act as a co-trustee to handle those duties.

Additionally, it is possible to set up a way that one co-trustee may remove another who is found acting against the interests of your relative. Some people feel more comfortable knowing that there is a checks and balances system in place administering the trust. While a trustee can be taken to court for breaking a fiduciary duty, setting in place a mechanism to remove a malicious trustee may bring relief more quickly.