Qualifying Questions to Ask Clients to Determine Suitability for Trust
1 – What is the total (estimated) value of your single name assets including liquid assets (stocks, bonds, funds, cash accounts, etc.), privately held businesses, real estate, partnerships, etc?
2 – What is the total (estimated) value of your jointly held assets with your spouse and/or others?
3 – Do you own contractual assets with a named beneficiary (ies) such as life insurance, annuities, IRA’s, pensions, etc?
4 – Do you own any illiquid assets – businesses, real estate, collectibles, limited partnerships, etc?
5 – What is your family status – do your heirs (including your spouse) have different needs and capabilities (in terms of handling finances)?
6 – Do you wish to restrict the disposition of, or provide special management for your assets for some or all of your heirs? Or, are you comfortable bequeathing completely unencumbered gifts to your heirs?
7 – To whom do you wish to leave your assets? Spouse, children, grandchildren, charities? Are there reasons for providing specialized asset management for some or all of your heirs?
8 – Have you done any estate planning? If so, what planning vehicles have you put into place?
9 – At your death, do you wish to keep the details of your estate and the settlement of your estate private?
10 – Is asset protection from possible creditors important to you?
11 – In addition to naming a trustee, would you like to name a trusted family member or another individual as a trust protector (with specific powers and limited liability)?
12 – Would you like your trust to hold unique assets, a closely held business or other concentrated position?
13 – In addition to naming a trustee, would you like to name a trusted family member or another individual as a distribution advisor (with limited liability)?
14 – Do you want your current asset management firm to continue managing your trust assets?
15 – Would you like to accumulate income and gains in your trust and avoid state fiduciary income tax?