The Families Advocate serves as the marker guiding their clients to the correct path in cases

where navigation becomes difficult and

the trail may be easily lost.

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A Fiduciary is someone who accepts the responsibility for taking care of the needs or property of another person for the benefit of that person. A person who serves in a fiduciary capacity can be a professional, family member or friend.  The person served by a fiduciary places trust in the fiduciary to manage his or her affairs solely for his or her benefit and not for the fiduciary's benefit.

 

  The element of trust is essential when the person receiving services is frail, vulnerable or incapacitated. 

 

In Arizona, persons serving as fiduciaries for a fee must be licensed by the state. All fiduciaries, whether serving for a fee or not, are governed by state law.  State law requires that to become licensed, fiduciaries must meet certain eligibility requirements, take initial training, pass a test, post a bond, furnish a set of fingerprints and pass a criminal background check.  Licensing must be renewed every two years. 

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Most people wish to select the person who will be entrusted with managing their affairs so that a stranger does not assume this very personal responsibility. However, in cases where a person does not have anyone to appoint, or that selection was not made prior to needing services, or when a person with diminished capacity has become a victim of exploitation, a professional licensed fiduciary may be the best option. 

 

Professionals in this line of work are licensed and bonded, must follow a strict code of ethics and are regulated by state law.  And some may be monitored by the court if they are serving under a court appointment.  This ensures oversight of the professional in cases when the person served is unable to advocate for themselves.

A professional fiduciary may also be the best solution to avoid family conflict. A professional fiduciary lends objective legal and financial expertise while ensuring that a person’s affairs are taken care of professionally and in their best interest. 

 

Parents often wish to name a child as their agent in their estate plans, but in cases where there are multiple children, squabbles over decisions and who holds the power to make them can get complicated and place a burden on the familial relationship.

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With over 33 years of combined Fiduciary experience, The Families Advocate will provide solutions to ensure the protection of your vulnerable loved one.  We may also provide that familial support that may be absent from an at-risk client, neighbor or friend, now or in the future when a caretaker is unable to continue providing service. 

 

To ensure our clients quality of life, that their property is secure and their estate is being utilized for their benefit, The Families Advocate will develop a person centered, needs based management plan that further promotes the sustainability of our client's estates.

The Families Advocate can also provide peace of mind for people who are drafting their estate plans and seeking a nominee that will provide for their protection or ensure their estate is settled pursuant to their wishes.

 

If the client has already passed, The Families Advocate will settle their estate timely and efficiently for the benefit of all beneficiaries. 

Staff Members

Heather Bull
Heather Bull

Principal Licensed Fiduciary

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Deborah Gilliland
Deborah Gilliland

Licensed Fiduciary

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Stephanie Smith
Stephanie Smith

Licensed Fiduciary

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