A trustee is a person appointed to manage all or part of the deceased’s property for the benefit of others e.g. for the beneficiaries named in a Will. An executor or court appointed Administrator is trustee of the deceased’s estate. Trustees have “fiduciary responsibility”, meaning that by taking control of the deceased’s property, they must act solely in the interests of that person or their heirs.

In a Will that requires the creation of a trust e.g. for minor beneficiaries, the executor may or may not also be named as trustee of the trust. In the example of a trust for minor beneficiaries, it is usually a surviving parent who is named as trustee. The executor is responsible for doing everything else to settle the estate, but once they have transferred the necessary assets to the trust, it is the responsibility of the named trustee to administer the trust per the terms of the Will.

 

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