Trust Instrument: Because a trustee is legally obligated to follow the terms of the trust instrument, you must read the entire trust document carefully. Do not sign any document indicating that you are willing to be bound by the trust document until you have read and understood all of its provisions.
Official Appointment: You have authority to act as trustee as soon as you have complied with the terms of the documents regarding your appointment. Because different trusts have different requirements, it is impossible to outline all specific requirements in this memo.
(a) As a general rule however, to become trustee, you must:
(1) Sign a “certificate of incumbency”5 indicating that you are the incumbent (i.e., acting) trustee and declaring that you are willing to follow the terms of the trust instrument.
(2) Attach to the certificate of incumbency a copy of: (a) your predecessor’s death certificate; (b) your predecessor’s resignation; or (c) declarations from physicians stating that your predecessor is incapacitated to the point that he or she can no longer act as trustee.
(3) Have the certificate of incumbency recorded in the county in which the trust is considered located (often referred to in the documents as the “situs” of the trust) and in each county in which real property owned by the trust is located.
(b) You can choose, if you wish, to have your appointment confirmed by the probate court [NRS 164.010], but normally this formal court proceeding is not necessary. On the other hand, if there is a dispute as to your appointment or qualifications or if you anticipate that some of your decisions may be challenged by beneficiaries, court confirmation and a trust administration proceeding in the probate court may be appropriate.