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Estate Trustee Details To Consider

There is no fool-proof method to prevent family and friends from challenging a will. However, there are a few details testators can include within their wills to help resolve matters if a dispute arises after they have passed.

According to Advisors.ca, a publication serving professionals who advise the public on issues of tax, estates and risk protection, providing specific details about appointing an estate trustee can help surviving family and friends determine who is responsible for making certain decisions regarding winding up their estate.

If you have questions about your role as an estate trustee, or about how an estate trustee is carrying out his or her responsibilities, it’s best to speak to an estate litigation lawyer. An estates lawyer can advise you on whether you have grounds to challenge the will, and how you can pursue the outcomes you desire.

Naming Estate Trustees

Consider naming an alternative for your estate trustee. If your choice for an estate trustee is unable to perform their duties, you will need to make sure someone else is ready to take on this responsibility. If the estate trustee dies, his or her estate trustee inherits the responsibility of administering your estate.

If the estate trustee refuses, then someone else must apply to the courts for that role. Especially in cases where there are multiple children or a surviving spouse, this could create a problem if each person believes they are best suited to be the estate trustee.

Using Joint Trustees

In some cases, testators may designate two people as joint trustees in their wills. This may be done for many reasons, one being to lessen the burden of administering the estate alone. However, this may also present some problems when they disagree. If their responsibilities are not laid out, there can be conflicts over how to proceed with winding up the estate.

In this situation, lawyers quoted in the article share the helpful tip of naming three estate trustees in cases of joint trustees. This way, there is a tie-breaker for any disputes that may arise.

If you need to settle a dispute against an estate trustee, or surviving family and friends, contact our estate lawyers for assistance.

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