When you create your will, you have the opportunity to name your executor. This person will handle all of your affairs after your death, including settling your estate. So it is important to choose your executor, and back-up executor, with care. You also need to make sure that your executor actually wants to serve; don’t make assumptions. Take a look at the following information, to learn more. If you have any questions, or if you’d like to discuss the duties of an executor, meet with an estate planning attorney.
Ask Your Potential Executor if He Wants to Serve
It’s important to avoid possible future issues by discussing your wishes ahead of time. If you choose to appoint a certain individual as your executor, you should discuss this choice, outlining the executor’s many duties.
Explain all Executor Duties
In many cases, people aren’t prepared for all of the responsibilities that go along with the job. It’s important to be honest about the duties that are expected of an executor. Tell your executor that it’s okay to decline if it feels like too much.
It’s Okay for Your Potential Executor to Say, “No”
You may find that your chosen executor isn’t ready for the responsibilities. If this is the case, you will need to rethink your decision. No one should accept an important trusted helper role, such as executor, out of obligation or because they are embarrassed to decline.
Appoint a Substitute and Name Back-Ups
Take the time to think through other potential choices, including a back-up executor. If you name an individual who declines to serve, you won’t be in control of how your affairs are handled unless a back-up is also named.
You never know what your potential executor will be going through at the time you die; sometimes people need to decline to serve because of illness, too many responsibilities, or a move.
Your estate planning attorney can help you prepare for a discussion with a potential executor. With a little extra effort and care, you can ensure that you’re selecting the best executor, who will be willing and able to handle your future estate affairs.
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