Picking the right person to be the executor of your will is an important part of the estate planning process. This is a step that you should give a lot of thought to. If you are not sure about which qualities make someone a good pick for this position, maybe we can help. A Woodland Hills executor attorney from our firm can tell you more about this role and how your estate will be handled when you are gone.
What Does an Executor Have to Do?
An executor has a lot of work to do. They are primarily responsible for making sure that your will is carried out as written. They can also help wrap up some of your outstanding affairs. Your executor will probably have to:
- Notify agencies and organizations about your death
- Prepare final tax returns
- Pay taxes
- Pay leftover bills
- Talk to financial institutions and gather records
- Give instructions to financial institutions and other entities concerning the estate
- Sell certain pieces of property or assets as directed in your estate plan
This position can be stressful and it takes a bit of work, even with a lawyer’s help. So make sure the person you pick is the right one for the job.
What Happens if I Do Not Pick an Executor?
If you do not assign someone the role of executor and you pass away, the state needs to appoint someone for you. This person will be known as an administrator. They must administer the estate in accordance with state law. The problem here is that the person chosen as an administrator might not have been who you would have chosen as your executor. So we think that it is generally preferable to have an estate plan in place and an executor named.
What Are the Qualities of a Good Executor?
First and foremost, a good executor is responsible. They are going to have some work to do and they need to handle your finances and estate with care. Picking out an irresponsible person for this job can cause all kinds of headaches for your family later.
You also want to be sure that your executor is honest. They have a bit of power here, and you do not want to choose someone who would misuse that kind of leverage.
Who Am I Not Allowed to Pick?
There are some rules about who you cannot pick to be an executor. Generally, you cannot choose someone who is:
- Under the age of 18
- Incapable of administering an estate
If you pick someone who cannot fulfill this role, the court can ignore your choice and appoint someone else to take over these duties.
Schedule Your Appointment With Our Team
If you are ready to begin the estate planning process or you just need to make some changes to your current plan, we can assist you. Contact the Law Offices of Yacoba Ann Feldman and let us put our decades of experience to work for you.