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Trustees 101

A Trustee is a person or entity (for example, a bank) given the responsibility of managing the property for the benefit of another person (beneficiary) according to the Trust terms (instructions) set out by the Trustor (Trust creator).  While a Trustee is not expected to be a legal or financial expert, a Trustee is charged with a fiduciary duty of acting in utmost good faith, diligence and honesty on behalf of the Trust’s beneficiaries.  A Trustee’s duties may vary depending on the size and complexity of the Trust, but some common duties are listed below:

  • Promptly inform beneficiaries of the Trust’s existence, their status as beneficiaries and right to obtain information about the Trust or Trustee’s duties;
  • Notify beneficiary of contact information for any Trustee(s) and compensation information;
  • Inform beneficiaries of significant information needed to protect the beneficiary’s interest;
  • Maintain separate accounts and investments for the Trust and invest prudently;
  • Maintain accurate records, file tax returns and report to beneficiaries as Trust requires.


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