independent ProFESSIONAL TRUSTEE FOR DISCRETIONARY FAMILY TRUSTS
Services to ENSURE compliance through professional administration.
A key role of a Professional Trustee is to assist other Trustees in administering a Family Trust. The overall goal is to assist co-Trustees in protecting the assets of the Trust for the Beneficiaries.
Under terms of engagement we can help with and complete the following:
• Prepare and file Family Trust financial accounts;
• Carry out gifting;
• Review loan documentation;
• Complete compliance obligations regarding Annual Trustee meetings including minuting, file notes and resolutions recording Trust discussions and decisions.
AS A professional trustee HOW CAN WE help?
Administration aside, Professional Trustees are highly regarded by the Judiciary and recent case law that came before the courts said their presence did make the finding of a Sham Trust that much harder.
A Sham Trust is where it is proven that the Trust was structured or utilised for an illegitimate reason, or it has not been set up correctly or administered incorrectly.
Additionally, the presence of a Professional Trustee gives the Trust independence by not being a Beneficiary of the Trust.
Our focus is Property Investment and we have over 10 years of experience with a number of clients. Our Professional Trustee Company has a rock-solid reputation for helping make sensible and objective decisions to ensure our clients assets are protected and tax minimised for the Beneficiaries of our clients Family Trusts.
WHY IS A FAMILY TRUST IMPORTANT IN TIMES OF UNCERTAINTY?
Think of a Family Trust as being akin to an insurance policy. In times of uncertainty, trusts can save the family home and shield money from business failure, divorce, aged care and unqualified excessive spending.
It is important to have your Trust drafted properly by lawyers and accountants who understand income tax and estate law as well as your goals and circumstances. People set up a Family Trust for a number of reasons that include;
• Asset protection- Safeguarding your assets from a financial disaster such as unexpected business debts or reducing the chance of relationship property claims by future partners protection against professional liability claims.
• Asset and means testing- Preparing for the time you or your spouse might require aged care by planning for Asset or income-tested means testing.
•Inheritance Protection- Ensures assets acquired across a lifetime are protected for the future generations of your family (estate planning) and not put at risk from subsequent matrimonial and business dealings.
• Tax Benefits- There are ways a well structured trust can be used to create tax benefits such as income splitting and paying beneficiaries entitlements at their lower tax rates.
• Maintaining confidentiality of your financial circumstances.
We utilise internal resources and where necessary external law firms to set up and support our clients needs. With the pace of change in the legislative framework. what worked twenty, ten or two years ago may not be working as intended now.
Finally we recommend that you do not leave your lawyer or accountant in charge of your Trust fund, running your estate or with the power to appoint and remove trustees.
We have seen many such arrangements as a 'money train' for lawyers and accountants to overcharge for 'management' or are slow or do not perform duties. We believe its important that final beneficiaries don't get caught in the 'money train' trap and are able to change lawyer and accountant to better value for money trust management.