July 31, 2013   Estate Planning

How to Choose an Executor for Your Estate

executor of a will Your estate plan is the combination of documents through which you can determine how your estate will be distributed upon your death. When you create your estate plan, you must also designate the person who will be in charge of carrying out the instructions that you leave. This is a very important decision that should not be made lightly.
Being named the executor of a will is not an honor. Rather, it is a large responsibility. The executor of a will must perform various tasks, such as notifying all of the decedent’s creditors, establishing the value of the total estate, filing any necessary tax documents, settling taxes accordingly, and distributing the remaining assets.
When selecting an executor, the most important consideration is whether the person can handle the various responsibilities of administering the estate. Many people mistakenly select executors based on their relationship to the person. This can quickly become disastrous when that person finds they are not suitable for the work.
If you are worried that none of your loved ones are willing or able to take on the responsibilities of serving as the executor of your will, or you simply do not want to place that burden on them, consider hiring a private fiduciary instead. Private fiduciaries are particularly beneficial when your estate plan is complex, or if you anticipate major family conflicts. Unlike a family member, a private fiduciary has a wealth of experience in serving as the executor of an estate.
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