Skip to Content

We are a Veteran Owned Business, providing 20% discounts for Veterans, First Responders, Elementary and High School teachers. Please contact us to set up a phone or Zoom meeting. Taking care of you and your family, It's What We Do!

Klenk Law

Changes to New York Revocable Living Trusts – Trustees

Posted on Thu Jul 16, 2015, on Revocable Trusts and Living Trusts

From our “Ask a Question” Mailbag: Changes to New York Revocable Living Trusts

Most Recently Updated July 15, 2018.

“I formed a Revocable Living Trust to avoid New York probate and named my two sons as the co-successor trustees. It seemed a good idea at the time, but now they are not speaking to one another. Should I change the trust?”

Changes to New York Revocable Living Trusts

Changes to New York Revocable Living Trusts

Many New Yorkers have formed Revocable Living Trusts to avoid the expensive New York probate process. For the trust to work properly, after your death, you need a successor trustee to step in to pay your final bills, taxes and to then distribute the trust assets to your heirs.

What is often overlooked is that this same person will step in to serve as trustee if you are ever incapacitated. So not only should the successor trustee be a person who can tie up your estate matters, the trustee must also be someone who can handle your affairs if you get Alzheimer’s or Dementia and require care for many years.

Considering Your Children

It is natural to turn to your children for this job. But, if your children do not get along, that arrangement can be a disaster. Each of them could retain an attorney and end up in court fighting about the smallest decisions—all being paid for out of your assets. If your children do not get along, and if you feel that picking one over the other would cause hurt feelings, then by all means select another person or entity to be the trustee.

Professionals as Trustee

A professional, such as your CPA, attorney, or a trust company will charge for the services—but that cost will be small compared to the litigation costs that will arise should your sons fail to cooperate with one another. Further, I find that it is always better for a family to avoid a conflict that might end up meaning they will not speak to each other. Let them be a little angry with one another, but don’t put them in a position where they fan that small anger into long term animosity.

More Probate Questions?

Picking a proper Trustee is only part of the overall probate process. By all means, if you wish to learn more, please read my more detailed article, The Probate Process All You Need to Know.

In Conclusion: Changes to New York Revocable Living Trusts

I hope that this article was helpful in explaining trustee planning. Further, I included links to even more detailed information on my website. Therefore, please contact me and let me know how I did. Certainly, your comments and questions are welcome!

Let our Probate Lawyers help walk you through what can be a confusing process. To begin with, call to speak to one of our experienced Probate Attorneys.  By all means, our lawyers are ready to answer your questions. In fact, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation. Ultimately our goal is to make the process as painless as possible!

Wills, Trusts, Probate, and Estate Litigation, It’s All We Do

Peter Klenk, New York Probate and Estate Planning Attorney


Estate Planning, Estate Planning Attorney, Estate Planning Lawyer, Living Trust, New York, Peter Klenk, Revocable Trust, Trusts

What Our clients are saying

Klenk Law Logo

Answered my question quickly and referred me to a colleague that could handle my problem

Klenk Law Logo

Tremendous firm with bright, kind and tenacious people. Great representation for our family.

Klenk Law Logo

Like another reviewer, I contacted Peter through his website using the free consultation link, for a question regarding PA inheritance taxes. The question was quite technical and difficult to explain, and the answer was nowhere to be found on the web. Peter grasped precisely what I was asking, and provided a clear, helpful response (with a touch of humor) the very next day.

Klenk Law Logo

Peter explained things in a way that was easy to understand. Everything was done in the time frame he said it. Could not have been better!

Klenk Law Logo

Peter explained a complex subject very clearly, helped us to decide the best approach to managing our estate and then made it very easy for us to execute the required documents. He will be a valuable resource for years to come and clearly has a great understanding of estate law that will lead to innovative solutions for us. I would unhesitatingly recommend him for estate planning.

Let us put our expertise to work for you.

Free consultation within 24 hours.