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What is a Trustee’s Duty?

Trustee Duties

A trustee has a special duty to care for assets in a trust and to make sure the assets are used for the stated purposes in the trust creation documents.  This duty is legally referred to as a “fiduciary duty”.  The courts consider this duty to be the highest level of responsibility and it requires a duty of loyalty and a duty of care.

Duties of Care and Loyalty

A Trustee must be loyal to the wishes of the grantor who established the trust. For example, if the grantor instructs that the assets be used for the education of his grandchildren, the Trustee may not use the assets to buy the grandchildren new clothes.  The Trustee must also display a duty of care which means he must not recklessly invest the assets or take unnecessary risks with the assets.  He must do whatever he can to preserve and protect the value of the assets.

Getting Legal Help

Before you designate a trustee to manage your trust, you need to carefully consider the financial experience and resources of your potential choices.  Experienced Estate Planning Attorney Elga Goodman can help you sort through your options and help you choose the person with the best background to serve as Trustee of your trust assets.  Call us today at 973-841-5111.

Posted in: Estate Planning, New York Estate Planning