By: Martin M. Shenkman, CPA, MBA, JD
Follow through. It is good advice, and not only for your golf swing. If you set up a trust, you must review it annually with your advisers. Are you adhering to the terms of the trust? Are there trustee, investment adviser or other actions to memorialize? Have you documented compliance with the prudent investor act? Have income tax considerations been addressed? Does the trust have appropriate property or liability insurance coverage? If the trust owns life insurance have you periodically evaluated the policy performance and options? Have you documented this? Tax laws change. Make sure that all relevant changes have been considered? Advisers learn new tricks. Has your trust benefited? If the trust purchased assets from the grantor have all payments been timely made? If there is a guarantee with a fee, has the fee been paid? If assets purchased include interests in an LLC or other entity do the entity documents and tax filings reflect this? If corporate stock is purchased is the trustee participating in annual meetings, signing consents, etc? No estate or financial plan is designed to sit on a shelf.
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