Home Finances How to Choose People to Represent You, Part 4

How to Choose People to Represent You, Part 4

In this hour, Elder Law and special needs attorney Jim Koewler talks with Suzanne Newman about how to appoint people to represent you in situations where you’re unable to act for yourself – a who’s who of people who should be involved in your estate plan.

This segment focuses on trusts.

Revocable Trust

  • Initial Trustee: Grantors (the people setting up the trust in the first place)
  • Successor Trustee (After initial trustees both deceased or physically/mentally unable to continue as trustee): Person who gets stuff done, meets deadlines, and doesn’t buckle under pressure from other heirs.

Irrevocable Third-Party trust for disabled person

  • Grantors are initial trustees

Successor Trustee

  • First Approach – Trustee: Person who will look out for disabled beneficiary but will not cave in to unreasonable demands for money from trust and will not resent having to deal with beneficiary
  • Second strategy:
    Trustee: Bank or trust company or trusted family member
    Distribution Committee (to make decisions on when to pay out for benefit of beneficiary, taking pressure off the trustee):
    – Special needs attorney
    – Social worker
    – Family member(s) (maybe)

HIPAA Release (Gives access to health information. Doesn’t grant decision-making authority.

  • Include everyone who is named in Health Care Power of Attorney
  • Include any other family members or friends who are likely to help look after you if you need care (long-term or otherwise)
  • Include elder law attorney and, if attorney has one, attorney’s care coordinator

You can listen to the podcast or watch it on YouTube. Learn more at protectingseniors.com.