Informal trusteeship

Manage money and pay bills for an adult who receives regular government benefit payments and wants help with managing their money.


Some adults who receive government payments have difficulties managing their money and remembering to pay their bills. Informal trusteeship is a no-cost way for someone – an informal trustee – to manage the adult’s benefits.

An informal trustee may be helpful for adults who:

  • are having problems managing their benefits
  • don’t have assets like real estate or investments
  • are willing to let someone help them

What an informal trustee does

An informal trustee:

  • receives the adult’s monthly government benefits
  • pays the adult’s monthly expenses and other needs
  • saves for the adult’s future needs

Informal trustees cannot manage any of the client’s assets other than the benefit. Examples of things an informal trustee cannot do are:

  • managing the adult’s financial investments
  • selling any of the adult’s personal or real property

Other options

Depending on the adult’s situation, you may need to consider other options, such as:

Who can be an informal trustee

This depends on the government department that issues the monthly benefit. In general, they require that an informal trustee:

  • must be over 18 years old
  • must have a trusting relationship with the adult
  • may be a relative or friend of the adult

The adult who wants an informal trustee must be receiving a regular monthly payment – from a government department that has an informal trustee program – such as the following:

Name an informal trustee

You must contact the government department that issues the adult’s payments to name an informal trustee. The department will tell you:

  • who can act as an informal trustee
  • what forms you need
  • where to get the forms
  • how to fill out the forms
  • how to submit the forms
  • how long it will take before an informal trustee is appointed

Complaints about an informal trustee

Contact the government department that issues the monthly benefit. The department will:

  • tell you how to submit a complaint
  • decide if they will investigate the informal trustee
  • decide if they will remove the informal trustee’s authority to manage the adult’s income