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A trustee is ultimately responsible for ensuring the Trust is productive and meets the needs of the beneficiaries, as set out in the terms of the Trust. If a trustee mismanages the Trust or its funds, they may be liable to compensate the beneficiaries.

A trustee must:
  • Understand the terms of the Trust
  • Obtain control of the assets
  • Carry out the terms of the Trust
  • Act in the best interests of the beneficiaries
  • Act impartially between the beneficiaries
  • Keep proper accounts
  • Give full account information when required
  • Maintain their discretion
  • Give any advice full consideration before acting on it
  • Act unanimously with all trustees
  • Invest any funds with the care, diligence and skill of a prudent person
A trustee must not:
  • Delegate any of the Trustee powers or duties
  • Act outside the terms of the trust
  • Take the same degree of risk with trust investments as they might their own
  • Take risks with funds that a 'prudent person'; or 'prudent company' would not take
  • Favour one beneficiary over another
  • Mix their personal assets with the Trust assets


An Executor is appointed in your Will to manage your estate after your death and distribute it according to your wishes.

Who should be your Executor?

Have you considered who should be your Executor? Often a friend or relative is appointed without understanding the responsibilities of an Executor. The process of managing an estate can be complex, lengthy and emotionally draining.

Appointing Equity Trustees

As a trustee company, Equity Trustees can be appointed as Executor or co-Executor of your Estate through your Will. We may also be appointed by an Executor who does not wish to take up the appointment or by the next of kin if there is no valid Will.