Serving Greater Virginia

Fiduciary, Executor & Trustee Services

The selection of a fiduciary can be a difficult one. The law firm of J.S. Burton, P.L.C. can help you properly evaluate whether a family member, professional or corporate fiduciary might be the best fit to manage your estate during your lifetime or after you are gone. J.S. Burton, P.L.C. can also serve as your Executor, Trustee or Trust Advisor.

A Trustee or Executor is a fiduciary who assumes responsibility for a position of trust. Often, fiduciaries serve by personal selection, court appointment as a conservator or trustee, as well as a guardian or personal representative of estates named in an individual’s estate planning documents.

Typical responsibilities include:

  • Prudent administration of the trust and estate assets
  • Choosing the right investment objectives and proper asset allocation
  • Completion and maintenance of the accounting records of all transactions performed in the capacity as a trustee or executor
  • Determining and administrating distribution requirements
  • Verification and payment of obligations, liens, debts and invoices
  • Ensuring that all proper trust and estate tax returns are filed

Typically, the trust or will document controls the role of the trustee and needs to be reviewed with the Trustor/Grantor for a total understanding of the purpose and intent of the role. A clear understanding must be attained regarding the dispositive provisions, tax and logistical procedures that the fiduciary will be required to oversee.

What is the Role of a Trustee?

A trustee fully reviews the trust assets and decides if any special action is needed such as securing greater liquidity, obtaining insurance, or selling risky investments. A trustee must also understand the client, their beneficiaries and the overarching family dynamics involved. Ultimately, the Trustee must maintain objectivity and impartiality. Your trustee is legally obligated to carry out all of the provisions of your trust agreement.

A trustee also engages in other responsibilities such as determining if the assets are titled in the trust name, checking all insurance policies, leases, contracts, real estate, and possible business interests which may be associated with the trust. A trustee also reviews all estate held investments to see if there is a need for any court oversight, reviews all bills on a timely and ongoing basis and compiles records for annual tax preparation. A trustee acts with impartial compassion towards all parties involved and has a duty to avoid conflicts of interest.

What is the Role of an Executor or Personal Representative?

An Executor is a personal representative who is appointed to serve as a fiduciary either by a court or through your last will and testament. Your executor will need to be approved by the probate court judge or commissioner so that the executor can carry out his or her duties. Your executor is also a fiduciary and as such is held to a strict legal standard. The roles and duties of an executor or personal representative are very similar to a trustee in that they require knowledge of several disciplines such as tax planning, investment management, property management, completing and filing court required inventories, accountings and receipts.

The law firm of J.S. Burton, P.L.C. can help you select the most appropriate fiduciary for your will and testament or trust agreement. Contact the office today for more information.

© 2022 JS Burton, P.L.C. | Disclaimer
477 Viking Drive, Suite 410, Virginia Beach, VA 23452
| Phone: 757.301.9500
5425 Discovery Park Blvd., Suite 101, Williamsburg, VA 23188
| Phone: 757.301.9500
1750 Tysons Blvd., Suite 1500, McLean, VA 22102
| Phone: 757.301.9500

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477 Viking Drive, Suite 410 , Virginia Beach, VA 23452 | Phone: 757.301.9500
5425 Discovery Park Blvd., Suite 101, Williamsburg, VA 23188 | Phone: 757.301.9500
750 Tysons Blvd., Suite 1500, McLean, VA 22102 (By Appointment Only) | Phone: 757.301.9500