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The duties of a successor trustee in trust administration

Perhaps your loved one asked you to serve as part of his or her estate plan after death. You may have accepted the position, perhaps believing that you would never have to serve. Then, your loved one died, and now you are called into service as your loved one's successor trustee and face dealing with the duties of trust administration here in Georgia.

Your loved one may have served as the trustee of his or her living trust during life, but may not have imparted your duties to you before death. Even though most people turn to legal resources to help them through the process, it is still a good idea to understand the duties you face. Even though it is an important task, taking an inventory of all of the trust's liabilities and assets is just the beginning.

You will need to locate your loved one's will and the trust, order some death certificates and keep records of your expenses. You need to do all of these things because as trustee, you owe a duty to the beneficiaries of the trust. Keeping good records will not only let them know you are living up to that duty, but may also protect you if the beneficiaries accuse you of breaching it.

You must perform other duties as well. Due to the gravity and importance of trust administration, it may benefit you to obtain the services of a Georgia attorney to help. Having a legal advocate working with you could help ensure that you meet your obligations and do not have to face the potentially stressful task alone.

Source:, "A Checklist for Settling a Living Trust Estate", Greg Reese, Accessed on Dec. 31, 2017

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