Can Beneficiaries Request Replacement Of A Trustee?

In New Hampshire, trusts are often established as part of the estate planning process to protect loved ones from receiving an outright gift payment and also to add a layer of privacy to an estate plan.

If your beneficiaries and your trustee don’t get along, this can foreshadow a lot of problems with the implementation of the trust.

The creator of a trust, also known as a grantor or settlor, may want the trustee to use discretion in providing principle or trust income to the beneficiary. The trust agreement will usually give that trustee a lot of discretion when it comes to making distributions to the beneficiary and the creator of the trust goal could be to improve the beneficiary’s life while also protecting them from spending that money impulsively. Despite the best intentions of the creator of the trust, there may be some circumstances in which the trustee has been shown to be unworthy of acting as a fiduciary for the beneficiary or the relationship between the trustees and beneficiaries deteriorates to the point that the trustee can no longer serve as a fiduciary role.

Under New Hampshire trust law, the beneficiaries or co-trustees can request a replacement and the court will consider numerous factors, such as investment performance, charge for services, experience and skill level as a trustee, responsiveness of the trustee to the beneficiaries, changes in the nature of the trustees since the creation of the trust and whether or not changing trustees would substantially benefit or improve the administration of the trust. When establishing a trustee, make sure you carefully consider someone’s qualifications and ability to serve in this role.

 

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