Can A Personal Representative or Trustee Steal Your Assets?

Leaving your final wishes to someone else can be a daunting prospect. Your Personal Representative or Successor Trustee could steal it all, but it is very unlikely if you plan correctly.

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Technically...They Could Take It All

Just a likely they could rob a bank. In reality is Personal Representative and Successor Trustees don't steal from estates. Most often your estate is protected because you picked a trustworthy person. 

In Oregon, the Probate Court will keep an eye on your estate.

Beneficiaries will also keep a close eye on the Personal Representative or Successor Trustee. If they smell anything fishy, they have options for correcting the situation.

The Powers They Do Have

Personal Representatives and Successor Trustees have lots of power. Their power comes from your Will or Trust and the State Laws.

Generally, they can do most anything that achieves your wishes and desires. However, they can't do anything illegal.

Personal Representatives and Successor Trustees Have Similar Duties

There are really four main duties for both Personal Representative and Successor Trustees.

  1. Gather all of your assets.
  2. Pay creditors.
  3. Disburse your assets pursuant to your wishes, or the State Laws if you don't have an Estate Plan.
  4. Close your Estate.

If you'd like to learn more or have any other Estate Planning questions, please schedule a complimentary Estate Planning Strategy Session.

About the Author Donald Rolfe

I'm a reformed litigator that now helps individuals, families and businesses prevent problems and stop worry. Contact me to learn more about my solutions that may be right for you.

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