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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
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    12

    Default Changing the Thre Trustee or Executor

    My question involves estate proceedings in the state of: New York, New Jersey

    If I were to select an executor for my estate and for whatever reason, decide to the change the executor or add co-executors to my estate, other than paying legal fees
    are there any penalties? Would it trigger anything?

    Would the implications be the same if I had a trustee and decided to change the trustee?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    6,663

    Default Re: Changing the Thre Trustee or Executor

    There are no penalties and it will trigger nothing if you decide to change your will. You can just sign and have it notarized and witnessed as a codicil (amendment) to the will. Or you can write a new will.

    Your will does not get recorded with the court until you die. It is kept with whomever you decide (a lawyer, a friend, the named executor) or you can just keep it in your dresser drawer to be found after your death. You can change your will as many times as your want as long as it is properly signed, witnessed, and notarized. But it is a good idea to destroy any previous wills.

    The same is true with a revocable trust. You can change trustees during your lifetime by revoking the trust and forming a new one. It's more complicated with an irrevocable trust.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    12

    Default Re: Changing the Thre Trustee or Executor

    Quote Quoting budwad
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    There are no penalties and it will trigger nothing if you decide to change your will. You can just sign and have it notarized and witnessed as a codicil (amendment) to the will. Or you can write a new will.

    Your will does not get recorded with the court until you die. It is kept with whomever you decide (a lawyer, a friend, the named executor) or you can just keep it in your dresser drawer to be found after your death. You can change your will as many times as your want as long as it is properly signed, witnessed, and notarized. But it is a good idea to destroy any previous wills.

    The same is true with a revocable trust. You can change trustees during your lifetime by revoking the trust and forming a new one. It's more complicated with an irrevocable trust.
    Thank you for the information.

    The reason why I bring up the triggering aspect is that I have been told numerous times that if whatever changes I decide to make, I need to consult a lawyer and accountant because those changes might trigger some type of penalty with the government.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Posts
    1,970

    Default Re: Changing the Thre Trustee or Executor

    Quote Quoting exitsign
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    If I were to select an executor for my estate and for whatever reason, decide to the change the executor or add co-executors to my estate, other than paying legal fees
    are there any penalties? Would it trigger anything?
    Not really sure what you're contemplating or concerned about, but the answer to your question as phrased is no. As long as you're alive and mentally competent, you're free to change anything and everything about your will. Note that a person does not become an executor until after the testator (the person who made the will) has died and the person has been appointed by the court to serve as executor. That a testator creates a will that nominates an executor is completely meaningless as long as the testator is living.


    Quote Quoting exitsign
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    Would the implications be the same if I had a trustee and decided to change the trustee?
    Again, I'm not really sure what you're contemplating or concerned about. If you have created a trust, the trust instrument should spell out the process by which a change of trustee may be effected. The standard grantor trust typically designates the same person as settlor/trustor and trustee. It typically says that, when the trustee dies or becomes mentally incompetent, someone else becomes trustee (or it spells out a process for determining a successor trustee). Importantly, a standard, revocable grantor trust is revocable and subject to amendment as long as the settlor/trustor/original trustee is alive and mentally competent.

    Quote Quoting exitsign
    View Post
    The reason why I bring up the triggering aspect is that I have been told numerous times that if whatever changes I decide to make, I need to consult a lawyer and accountant because those changes might trigger some type of penalty with the government.
    Told by whom?

    Which government? Federal? State? Local? Which agency of the government?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    15,932

    Default Re: Changing the Thre Trustee or Executor

    Quote Quoting exitsign
    View Post
    Thank you for the information.

    The reason why I bring up the triggering aspect is that I have been told numerous times that if whatever changes I decide to make, I need to consult a lawyer and accountant because those changes might trigger some type of penalty with the government.
    Ok, what I think that people are telling you is that if you change something IN your will, not the executor, but the whole who gets what part, that you need to consult a lawyer and accountant because it might cause your beneficiaries to have tax issues after you pass away.

    It will never cause any tax or penalty to YOU, to make changes to your will.

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