The transition of wealth between generations has put the spotlight squarely on fiduciary roles. With the rapid changes in the financial services space, directed trustees and independent administrative trust companies have exploded in popularity.

The Evolving World of Directed Trustees

Most advisors, wealth management firms, and clients under-appreciate the responsibility and risks of proper trusteeship.

They remember a culture and business model that existed decades ago.

These days, individuals trustees usually can’t handle the rigors of the job and law firms are leaving the space for liability reasons.

Finally, in an environment where clients want more flexibility and control, the large bank-owned trust departments provide a cumbersome experience and high turnover,

With this in mind, modern estate planning has unbundled traditional investment, administrative and distribution trustee roles. There is a huge appetite for jurisdictional planning and best-in-class providers.

With all of this change, it is confusing for the advisor to know who is responsible for what and how much it should cost.

The Problem for RIAs

RIA’s do not have the resources to advise or service clients with this complexity. The administration and oversight of these structures is a distraction.

Building a trust company to solve this problem does not make business sense in a private equity-backed RIA aggregation environment.

Moreover, using conflicted trust providers is out of the question for fear of putting client relationships at risk.

An increasingly popular option for RIAs and wealthy families is the use of directed trustees and the independent administrative trust company.

CHRISTOPHER HOLTBY is a co-founder of an independent trust company that works specifically with wealth advisors and directed trustees.

Not only do we highlight the best practices for identifying and partnering with an administrative trustee, but we also discuss the typical workflow between an RIAs and directed trustees.

Chris’ Background with Directed Trustees

How RIAs work with directed trustees and an independent trust company:

1/ What are the basic requirements of independent trust company?

2/ Accordingly, which “value adds” should RIA firms should look for?

3/ Are there key attributes to spot when deciding to work/partner with an independent trust company?

4/ Lastly, should you be aware of any “Gotchas” in the space?

How Do We Stay in Touch with Chris?


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