To become a Trustee of an SMSF the person must accept the role of trustee or director in writing and sign a declaration stating that they understand their duties and responsibilities. These forms must be kept with the SMSF records for at least 10 years as they may need to be provided to the ATO upon request.
The general rule is that all members of the SMSF must be trustees (if individual trustees) or directors of the corporate trustee and there are no other trustees/directors. But there are three exceptions.
As all members of the SMSF are also trustees it is important to carefully consider who is brought in as a member of the SMSF. All trustees have equal say in the decisions of the fund. This may have particular implications for the decisions on payment of death benefits.