Trust and Investment Management

trust and investment management services

BankWest Trust / Investment Management Services improve clients’ lives by easing their burdens and improving their financial situations. We combine proven strategies with forward-thinking solutions to deliver financial peace of mind to a wide variety of clients including individuals, companies, and institutions.
 


Investment Management

Estate Planning

Trust Services

Charitable Giving

Investment Management


Your investment management plan starts with a thorough analysis of where you are relative to where you want to be. Our investment professionals will help you create a road map to best achieve your goals and maximize your assets. Then, we’ll continually monitor new tools, emerging strategies and tax changes to help you get the most out of your money over the long term.

In addition to providing investment management services through its Trust Department, BankWest partners with Financial Counselors Inc. (FCI) to provide individual security management for high net worth and institutional clientele. Financial Counselors is a trusted resource, with the reliability of a well-established money management firm and the expertise of some of the most innovative leaders in the field.

Investment Policy Development & Review

  • Review investment objectives, liquidity needs and risk tolerance.
  • Define performance criteria.
  • Periodic review.

Asset Allocation Construction & Review

  • Identify asset classes and investment styles.
  • Construction of allocation models to meet risk preferences and return expectations.
  • Investment manager selection using separate accounts complemented with Mutual Funds and Exchange Traded Fund Portfolios.

Contact one of our trust / investment management professionals for a no obligation consultation.

Estate Planning


When you are no longer here, your choices will still impact your loved ones, your business interests and your favorite causes. Estate laws are complex and the consequences of being inadequately prepared are significant. BankWest delivers estate planning services backed by experience and based on proven principles. Under your direction, your estate plan can be designed to:

  • Distribute assets according to your wishes.
  • Keep a family business or property in the family.
  • Leverage tax benefits.
  • Protect your heirs from emotional and financial distress.
  • Determine who will manage your assets.
  • Preserve the value of your estate.
  • Determine how your assets will be managed should you become incapacitated.
  • Provide guidance to your heirs in managing their inheritance.

Request a copy of our free Estate Planning Guide

Estate Planning Action Plan: A guide to the basic steps of estate planning.

Contact one of our trust / investment management professionals for a no obligation consultation.

Trust Services


Trust services are used by people of all ages with diverse goals. Their common thread, however, is the need or desire for professional financial services. That service could be record-keeping, investment or property management, bill payment, access to tax benefits, retirement planning, estate administration, aiding a charity, providing for needs of a family member, appointment as a corporate fiduciary or any combination of these.

Financial Management

Some of our clients are persons for whom financial chores have become burdensome. These clients may rely on us to monitor their investments, see that they receive the income they should, pay their bills, make arrangements if they need to move to different living accommodations, deal with renters, supervise property maintenance and engage other service providers. Some of these clients simply hire us as their agent. Others create a trust naming us as their trustee or successor trustee. Often they have established their trust as a means to avoid probate and maintain continuity and privacy for their family upon their death, as well as managing things for them when they are indisposed.

Trust Administration

BankWest will operate as trustee under the terms of a trust document to invest, hold and distribute the trust funds per the trust's instructions. As trustee, we also file the returns required for the trust and are held to all the laws required of a fiduciary in the State of South Dakota. BankWest Trust will also act as agent for a trustee or co-trustees to assist them in carrying out the terms of a trust and advise them of their fiduciary rights and responsibilities.  

Minimizing Taxes

Some trust clients are particularly interested in minimizing income taxes or estate taxes. Special trusts, especially those that include one or more charities among the beneficiaries, can bring about significant tax savings, while providing income to the donor or a family member for a lifetime. These clients frequently have concluded that they would rather help a charity of their choice than have their money go to the IRS where they don’t know how it will be used.

Special Needs

You may have a family member with a disability. Regardless of their age, you may want to assure the individual  does not receive a direct inheritance, gift or settlement. Under these circumstances, clients may arrange for the assets to go into a special trust that can provide only those benefits the individual does not receive from public assistance. This also helps ensure the individual does not violate any public benefits they may receive. 

Court Appointment

Sometimes our services are requested by the Courts. This can happen when a child is awarded or inherits money. If the child is under the age of 18, the Court must appoint a conservator to manage the money for the benefit of the minor. In addition to investing the money, the conservator must make decisions about how the money will be used for the benefit of the child until the child reaches age 18 and must report to the Court each year on how the money has been used. A mistake some parents make, especially when there is a divorce, is naming minor children as beneficiaries of life insurance. If the parent dies and the beneficiary is not of age, the insurance company will not issue a check until someone has gone to court and had a conservator appointed to serve until the child’s 18th birthday. In these cases it is too bad the parent did not name a trust, instead of the child, as beneficiary in the first place.

Protecting Assets

A parent or grandparent who does not want to have inherited assets turned over to an 18-year-old needs to plan ahead. Estate planning documents should direct that the inheritance go to a trust that will continue until the child reaches a specified age beyond 18. Sometimes the trust document provides for partial distributions at various ages, instead of a single lump sum. Generally, a trust can be designed to do whatever its creator wishes to do for the beneficiary, while protecting the assets from the future beneficiary’s creditors. Some of our clients have established testamentary trusts that pay each of the adult children a fixed amount per month until the money is exhausted.

Estate Administration

Many clients name us as personal representative in their wills. In this role we have the duty of gathering, protecting and accounting for the assets of the estate, paying final expenses, filing tax returns and distributing assets to the recipients named in the will. When we we serve as personal representative, family members, who may be busy with their own work or may not live nearby, are not burdened with administering the estate of the deceased. Sometimes we are designated, not only for convenience, but as a means of preventing possible family strife.

Charitable Purposes. We provide investment and administration of funds for many charitable organizations. Donors, particularly those who want their gifts to continue in the future, place their gifts with us to be invested and used according to their wishes for the charity of their choice. In this aspect of our work we administer many charitable funds ranging in size from a few thousand dollars to several hundred thousand

Employer Retirement Plans / Rollovers

We serve as administrator for all types of retirement plans, including profit-sharing and 401(k) arrangements for a number of businesses and as trustee for rollover IRAs of many retired persons.

Contact one of our trust / investment management professionals for a no obligation consultation.

Charitable Giving


Oahe Foundation

BankWest Chairman Charles Burke II was a life-long philanthropist who envisioned the long-term benefit of creating a flexible and inexpensive tool to help individuals and businesses fulfill philanthropic aspirations. Under his direction, the Oahe Foundation was established in 1984 as a non-profit 501(c)(3) foundation.

To create a charitable fund in your name or in the name of a loved one, you simply identify a charitable purpose, provide a gift of at least $500, and draft a letter of direction for your fund. Professional administration of the fund is provided at the low cost of 60 cents annually per $100 (.60%). Contact us for suggested language for making a bequest in your will, or to request a sample letter of direction to create a fund.

Lifetime Gifting

Many individuals wish to make charitable gifts during their lifetimes so that they may see the impact that their giving has made.  BankWest trust can work with individuals and their tax advisors to help them maximize the personal and charitable impacts of those gifts.

Charitable Trusts

Some individuals wish to retain an income either currently or to have one in the future along with benefiting from charitable giving. These individuals benefit greatly from establishing a Charitable Remainder or Charitable Lead trust and working with BankWest Trust in either a trustee or agent capacity.

Public and Private Foundations

Individuals wishing to retain a high level of control over long term charitable giving can benefit from the expertise of the BankWest Trust Department as either an agent of a foundation or an advisor to a foundation’s board.

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