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Our Office

  • Midwest City Office

    Address

    1384 South Douglas Boulevard
    The Timbers Office Park
    Midwest City, Oklahoma 73130

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The Crosthwait Law Firm A Professional Corporation locations:

Ratings & Reviews

  • lawyers
    5.0/5.0

    I highly recommend Aaron. He is helpful, kind, and knowledgeable. He helped make the divorce process as quick and as painless as possible. Appreciated his timely responses to my phone calls and emails. I would absolutely hire him again, and...
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    — Client

  • lawyers
    5.0/5.0

    We have had the opportunity to hire Aaron for the last 6 years. Aaron has worked with us on payments in the past. Never made us feel bad for asking sooo many questions, but is always happy to answer them. Very knowledgeable and responsive.

    — Client

  • lawyers
    5.0/5.0

    Aaron is sharp and quick to grasp the gravity of any situation. He is very responsive to client inquiries and requests. Aaron is an extremely organized person, which serves him, his law firm, and client well. He has the highest of ethica...
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    — Client

  • lawyers
    5.0/5.0

    What impressed me about Aaron, was that nothing was "sugar coated". He was very straight forward and told me what to expect each step of the way. He kept me informed of what the options were and the risks. Your knowledge of the law was inv...
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    — Client

  • lawyers
    5.0/5.0

    While no one wishes to find themselves in a divorce proceeding, Mr. Arnall is a knowledgeable and trustworthy attorney who can guide you through the process. I was impressed of his knowledge of the federal retirement and benefits program. I...
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    — Client

Who Should Serve as Trustee of My Trust?

If those you have chosen as Trustee lack the ability or knowledge to implement your directions, then regardless of how well prepared your estate planning documents are, especially your trusts, your estate planning goals may fail.

The following are some things to think about when you choose a Trustee:

(1) Does your prospective Trustee have an inherent conflict of interest, or is he/she independent?

This type of conflict may arise in several different ways. Having a beneficial interest in the trust is one, and the prospective Trustee having a personal economic interest in the trust assets is another.

(2) Does your prospective Trustee possess adequate expertise to carry out your wishes?

A Trustee may, and often should, engage agents to assist them in the administration of a trust when the Trustee may be lacking in expertise in a certain area, e.g.,managing investments. However, the Trustee is ultimately responsible and should possess the abilities to exercise prudence in choosing the agent, establishing the scope of the delegation and having sufficient knowledge to understand and review the agent’s actions.

(3) Does your prospective Trustee possesses appropriate fiduciary capabilities?

Trustees must often make tough choices based on your directives. Whether a Trustee’s decision is right or wrong is rarely objectively certain. A Trustee’s decision may please one or more beneficiaries while causing distress to others. In order to be a successful Trustee, one must possess the judgment to make fair assessments and yet still be able to defend their decisions in the face of possible hostility, which may include litigation.

(4) Where does your prospective Trustee live?

While not required, having a Trustee in close geographical proximity to the beneficiaries tends to be more effective in conducting an efficient administration of your trust.

(5) Even if you regularly review your estate planning throughout the years, will the Trustee you’ve chosen likely survive you and be able to see the job through? Have you named an appropriate alternate?

Unless you are considering a corporate fiduciary, you should take into account the age and health of your Trustee and/or Successor Trustee.

(6) Should your Trustee be paid?

Trust administration is not free and cost is an important factor. Even if an individual Trustee is not compensated, he/she will likely need to hire third parties to render services in areas in which he/she lacks ability.

(7) How is your Trustee accountable?

If the inexperience or poor decisions caused by the Trustee result in losses to the Trust, can the beneficiaries be made whole? If a corporate fiduciary is serving or if an individual is bonded (which is very difficult and costly to obtain), then yes. Otherwise, the answer could likely be no.

Designating an appropriate initial and successor Trustee should be treated as one of the most critical elements in the estate planning process. The experienced estate planning attorneys at The Crosthwait Law Firm understand the risks, obligations, and requirements involved in estate planning and will skillfully guide you through the entire process.

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