Questions You Should Ask When Interviewing a Trustee

Client Centered

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?

-Flexible Trustee

-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

-Family meetings