The National Aboriginal Trust Officers Association

National Aboriginal Trustee Training Program – Program Overview

Giving Participants the Skills to Enhance Community Trust Assets

The National Aboriginal Trustee Training Program consists of 8 modules, followed by a comprehensive case study that will incorporate key points and skills learned throughout the program.

  1. Trust Overview
  2. Typical Trust Frameworks
  3. Duties and Powers of Trustees
  4. Trust Investment
  5. Trust Expenses
  6. Trustee Meetings
  7. Accounts of Trustees
  8. Trust Reporting

*Comprehensive Case Study

Learning Objectives

By the end of the program, participants will have met the following key learning objectives:

  • To identify the key elements, parties and purposes of Aboriginal Trusts
  • To understand different types of Trusts and Trust agreements, as well as identify common frame works for Trusts
  • To identify the duties of a Trustee and the role a Trustee plays
  • To better understand important investment concepts, as well as how to select an investment advisor
  • To identify what reasonable Trust expenses are and strategies for controlling them
  • To understand the importance of meetings and the process for recording meeting minutes
  • To understand important skills related to accounting used for Trusts and the purpose of account statements
  • To identify and understand key trust records, as well as the purpose and importance of reporting


Accreditation Outline Phase 1

NATOA Trustee Training Outline

Module 1 – Trust Overview

1.1.      Opening Scenario: What is a Trust? (interactive scenario)
1.2.      What is an Aboriginal Trust?
1.3.      Why have a Trust?
1.4.      How does a Trust work?
1.5.      What are the different types of Trusts?
1.6.      What is in a Trust Agreement?
1.6.1.   Can a Trust Agreement be changed or amended?
1.6.2.   When does a Trust Agreement end?
1.6.3.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
1.7.      Summary
1.8.      References
1.9.      Quiz: Trust Basics
1.10.    Assignment: Review of Specific Trust Agreement


Module 2 – Duties and Powers of a Trustee

2.1.      Opening Scenario: What does a Trustee do? (interactive scenario)
2.2.      Who should act as Trustee?
2.2.1.   Individual (Band Member)/Independent Trustee
2.2.2.   Corporate Trustee
2.3.      What are the duties of a Trustee?
2.3.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
2.4.      What are the powers of a Trustee?
2.4.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
2.5.      Does a Trustee receive any compensation?
2.6.       Summary
2.7.       References
2.8.       Quiz: Trustee Duties and Powers
2.9.       Case Study: Choosing a Corporate Trustee


Module 3 – Trust Investment
3.1.      Opening Scenario: Is this a good Trust investment? (interactive scenario)
3.2.      What are bonds?
3.3.      What are stocks?
3.4.      What are mutual funds?
3.5.      What is the Prudent Investor Rule?
3.6.      How is the Investment Industry structured?
3.7.      What is an Investment Report?
3.8.      What types of investments are permitted?
3.8.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
3.9.      Online Discussion: Learning From Others – Investments: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly
3.10.   Summary
3.11.   References
3.12.   Quiz: Trust Investments
3.13.   Case Study: Choosing an investment


Module 4 – Trust Spending

4.1.      Opening Scenario: Is this a reasonable Trust expense? (interactive scenario)
4.2.      What are reasonable Trust spending guidelines? (model?)
4.2.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
4.3.      What are reasonable Trust expenses? (model?)
4.3.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
4.4.      How can a Trustee prioritize spending?
4.5.      Online Discussion: Learning From Others – Best Practices for Trust Spending
4.6.      Summary
4.7.      References
4.8.      Quiz: Trust Spending
4.9.      Case Study: Is this a reasonable expense level for this Trust?


Module 5 – Trust Meetings

5.1.      Opening Scenario: Why do we need a Trust meeting? (interactive scenario)
5.2.      How often do we need to meet?
5.2.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
5.3.      What are the responsibilities of the Meeting Chair?
5.3.1.   Microsoft Word Meeting Announcement template
5.3.2.   Microsoft Outlook Email Meeting Announcement template (email protocol, privacy issues)
5.4.      What are Meeting Motions?
5.5.      Why vote during a Meeting?
5.6.      Why do we need Meeting Minutes?
5.6.1.   Microsoft Word Meeting Minute template
5.7.      How should Meeting Minutes be distributed?
5.7.1.   Microsoft Outlook Email template (email protocol, privacy issues)
5.8.      Summary
5.9.      References
5.10.    Quiz: Trust Meetings
5.11.    Assignment (Actual Meeting or Case Study Meeting): Record and Distribute Trust Meeting Minutes


Module 6 – Trust Accounting and Taxes (resource: AFOA)

6.1.      Opening Scenario: What Trust information does the accountant need to prepare financial statements and taxes? (interactive scenario)
6.2.      Why do we need to use an accountant?
6.3.      What is an audit?
6.4.      What are the tax issues impacting a Trust?
6.5.      When should a tax lawyer be consulted?
6.6.      Online Discussion: Learning From Others – Best Practices for Trust Accounting and Taxes
6.7.      Summary
6.8.      References
6.9.      Quiz: Trust Accounting and Taxes
6.10.    Assignment (Actual Accounting/Tax Information or Case Study Accounting/Tax Information): Summarize the required accounting/tax information for the accountant


Module 7 – Trust Reporting

7.1.      Opening Scenario: What is Trust Reporting? (Opening Scenario)
7.2.      Who needs to receive Trust Reports?
7.2.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
7.3.      What information needs to be included in the Trust Report?
7.3.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
7.3.2.   Microsoft Excel Trust Report template
7.4.      How often does the Trust Report need to be distributed?
7.4.1.   Examples of specific Trust clauses
7.4.2.   Microsoft Outlook Email template (email protocol, privacy issues)
7.5.      Summary
7.6.      References
7.7.      Quiz: Trust Reporting
7.8.      Comprehensive Case Study: Examining the ABC Trust (incorporates concepts from all modules)



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