Due to failing health, my mother recentlt resigned as trustee of her RLT. The RLT lists me as the successor trustee. I'd like to have my two sisters also designated as successor trustees in case I die before my mother. My mother is okay with doing this. What form is required? Can it be a simple document signed by my mother and notarized?
I would agree with Attorney Fromm that an amendment is the best way to achieve what you are trying to accomplish. It would be a good idea, while your mother is still competent, to review the remaining provisions of the trust., to make sure that it still satisfies her objectives. If it does, then I am not sure that you would need an attorney to draft the amendment. If the only change is to add two alternate successor trustees, then you might be able to amend the trust on your own. You would want to have two disinterested witnesses and a notary who are present when your mother signs the amendment. The amendment should be dated and it should refer to the original trust and to the paragraph in the trust that you are amending.
Please feel free to contact me if you have additional questions or concerns.
Best of luck to you!
If the trust document does not name successors, then the simplest method is to amend the trust document. States vary as to the execution requirements and since this is such an important matter, you need to have this done by an experienced estate planning attorney. In fact you should go back to the attorney who drafted the trust if you feel he is competent and have him draft an amendment. This should not be too expensive, either.
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Mr. Fromm is licensed to practice law in PA with offices in Philadelphia and Montgomery Counties and services clients in all parts of Pennsylvania. He can be reached at 215-735-2336 or at the email address listed below. He has an AV Preeminent Rating (5.0 out of 5.0) with Martindale-Hubbel, the highest possible rating for legal ability and ethical standards. Also, he has received a 10.0 rating from AVVO and was featured as a 5Star Wealth Manager in the Philadelphia Magazine, November 2009 issue on page 123.
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