If you’re like most people, you assume that your trustee will call an attorney when you are disabled or die and all will proceed smoothly. If you want your estate plan to be carried in the manner you intend, there are 5 things your trustee needs to know. Here is the estate planning information that your trustee needs readily available:
1. Documents: Your trustee needs access to your current estate planning documents with a schedule of all assets with up to date balances (keep the most current statement) and titling information. Also, include the account numbers and institutional contact information for each asset.
2. Advisor Information: Although your trustee can hire any advisor he or she chooses, it is often helpful to be able to consult with your personal advisors such as your estate planning attorney, CPA, financial advisor, and insurance professional.
3. Contact List: In addition to advisor contact information, your trustee will need a list of people to contact should you fall ill or die. This would include professionals such as your minister, doctor, and funeral director as well as a list of family members and friends.
4. Important Papers: Along with your estate planning documents, keep a file or binder of certificates (stock, marriage, divorce, adoption, and death certificates.) Car titles, real estate deeds, insurance policy papers should also be included.
5. Usernames/Passwords: Often overlooked, but vitally important, are usernames and passwords for online accounts, including but not limited to email, Twitter, Face Book, bank, investment, and utility accounts.
The estate planning portfolios prepared by our office include the option to store all this critical information in an easy to use three ring binder.
If you have any questions about what estate planning information should be readily available to your trustee, consult with an experienced and qualified estate planning attorney.