Questions You Should Ask When Interviewing a Trustee
What skills/experiences allow you to perform the various duties of a fiduciary?
-All Trust officers have completed the formal training for Trust Administration, CTFA certified Trust Financial Advisor as administered by the ABA and continuing legal education requirements annually
-Bio available in prospect meet & greet
What are the advantages/disadvantages of individual vs. corporate?
-INDIVIDUAL ADVANTAGES: Closer family connection / Lower cost
-INDIVIDUAL DISADVANTAGES: Individual may not be qualified / Could cause family tension or fighting / may cause burden on the individual
-CORPORATE ADVANTAGES: Qualified & Trained in this line of work / Longevity. Corp will always be around, helps to protect harmonious family dynamics
-CORPORATE DISADVANTAGES: Cost may be more than Individual Trustee / less direct contact with family
How do you work/partner with my current team (Advisor/Attorney/CPA)
-Extension of services to build out your team or fill gap you have.
-Honor trusted Advisor relationship and work with them
How do you make distribution decisions?
-Document – Tends to be very flexible
-Based upon conversations with Grantors about Family values, Goals, Objectives
-Assess needs of beneficiary and access to other assets
-Any concerns about substance abuse/gambling/ etc.?
What bonding restrictions do you have and how is that important, if at all?
-Bond/Insurance is another layer of protection
-Regulated by state / Authorized to do business in MN & SD
-Regular Exams every 18-36 months
What back up do you have in case of illness or unavailability of lead Trustee? Do you have a qualified partner or associate? Also is there an assistant for routine admin matters?
-Yes, we have backups. Our accounts have a Lead Advisor & Backup Advisor for administrator, a Client Service Representative, and our Operations team for support.
How would you be replaced if I am not happy with your services and who has the authority to replace you?
-The document would direct that process. Most documents allow an individual or family member or Trust protector to remove a Trustee
-Most restrictive case… court approval removal
What is your fee structure?
-Asset based fee for trustee services
-Annual/Retainer fee for estate settlement
-Annual Fee for ILIT
-All fees can be discussed in prospect meet & greet
Are you willing to hold Non Traditional or Non Marketable assets?
-Yes, we can hold Private equity, home, farmland, cabins, etc.
Will you serve as Trustee of special needs and supplemental needs Trusts?
-Yes, we can serve as trustee of Special or Supplemental Needs Trusts.
What makes us different?
-Direct relationship with grantor, family, and Trust protector
-Grantor has direct access to us
-Work phone rolls directly to the advisor’s cell phone
-Build relationships with you and meet with you prior to having an active role, so we are able to get to know your goals, objectives, family dynamics