During our lifetimes we have heard in the news to be careful not to put all our eggs in one basket. We have been told not to invest too much money with one financial institution, not to keep all our money in one type of account. Diversify your portfolio; invest in mutual funds, stocks, bonds, annuities and certificates of deposit. Also make sure that your accounts are FDIC insured.
While this is all valid information, think about your Successor Trustee who at some point will have to manage all of your accounts. With the electronic age, a significant amount of people are managing accounts online and some are not receiving paper statements. Think of how difficult this task may be if your portfolio is so diversified.
We recently had a trust administration where the successor trustee had to locate and manage over 50 accounts at various financial institutions in multiple states. He was responsible for calling the institutions, providing them with the necessary information showing he was the legally acting trustee, obtaining date of death values to complete the Inventory and Appraisal and managing the accounts, making responsible financial decisions, until the date of distribution. This can be not only timely but also costly to your estate.
This task may not be so daunting if you are well organized. Unfortunately, what seems well organized and logical to you may not be for someone who is unfamiliar with your assets. We suggest you speak with your financial advisors frequently to ensure that your assets are working for you. Check the interest rates and think about your short term and long term financial goals. Think about consolidating some accounts. Ultimately this process will make it easier for you to manage and simplify things for your trustee in the future.