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Why do creators of trusts have to appoint successor trustees?

Estate planning is not only for the wealthy. Everyone in New York state would be wise to establish wills and trusts with the guidance of legal counsel. When a person sets up a revocable trust, the trustor can manage it while he or she is alive and able. However, a successor trustee must be appointed to take over the management of a trust upon the creator's death or if his or her mental or physical deterioration debilitates the trustor.

The successor trustee will then carry out the wishes of the trustor. If he or she indicated the trust must be distributed to the beneficiaries and then be closed, that would be the trustee's task. If, for example, the trust creator leaves behind minor children, the trustee would have to manage that part of the trust until the age of the children specified by the trustor. This is because laws prevent minors from owning property.

Among the many responsibilities of the successor trustee, they will follow the trust creator's instructions in distributing trust funds to the children's guardians. The trustee will also manage the trust in a manner that will ensure the generation of sufficient income to provide for the children's care. Furthermore, it might be a good idea to name additional potential trustees for circumstances in which the primary successor trustee is incapable or unavailable to serve.

Many people procrastinate estate planning because it seems a daunting task. However, an experienced New York attorney can provide support and guidance every step of the way. Legal counsel can assess the client's unique circumstances and explain the need for wills and various options of trusts for effective estate planning.

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