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Planning for trusts can be navigated with simple tips

A key part of managing assets is often setting up a trust. The process can be overwhelming, but when professional advice is secured earlier, it makes things easier for all involved. If you're currently making plans for managing your wealth, it will help if you follow a few key tips.

One is making sure that relatives are comfortable with the roles you want to give them, like managing a trust. This starts with conversations and knowing what roles they would like. It also requires objective judgments about who is suited for which role. A favorite relative may be the one you're closest to but might not be suited for a financial management role.

Additionally, you might want to have a professional facilitator, such as an estate attorney, help with the family conversations. In some cases, this can help when communicating the reasons for your decisions about who should be your trustee. If you decide to go that way, you'll probably want to meet with the facilitator first so you'll be on the same page with them. Of course, you might want the meeting to be just you and your relatives if that suits your family dynamics best.

It is also important to prepare paperwork for the trust in advance. You want to make sure that the paperwork is clear and unambiguously establishes what a trustee does, so the person you choose to manage your trust will understand their responsibilities. You can then share the paperwork with family members and explain it to them so they understand how everything will proceed.

By following these simple tips, choosing the right person to manage your trust can be much smoother. Of course, there are many additional things to consider to make sure that your estate is in good shape. An experienced attorney can help you with those.

Source: This Week, "6 tips for navigating the estate-planning talk" Sheryl Nance-Nash, Dec. 26, 2014

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