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How to choose an executor

On Behalf of | Oct 25, 2023 | Estate Planning

You’ll want to consider several factors when choosing the person who will oversee your Maryland estate. You will want to choose someone least likely to predecease you or back out of this role after you die. However, you’ll also want to be sure that whoever serves in this role is capable of following directions and not succumbing to pressure from outside parties.

Probate can be a long process

Even in a streamlined case, probate can still take several days or weeks to complete. In a typical case, spending several months or even years settling a deceased person’s affairs is not uncommon. Therefore, you’ll need to find someone who can make your estate a priority for a significant period of time. It may be easier for someone to be an executor if that person lives close by or has a predictable professional or social schedule.

Choose someone with integrity

An executor is responsible for securing your assets, handling the estate’s money and making distributions. An executor is also responsible for evaluating creditor claims and ensuring all tasks are completed on time. Ideally, you’ll choose someone capable of acting ethically, meaning that creditors and beneficiaries will be treated fairly and objectively.

Don’t hesitate to name an alternate

During the estate planning process, you may find comfort in having a backup plan when it comes to who will represent your interests after you pass. You can name alternate executors who will step up if your top choice is unable or unfit to serve when the time comes. For instance, if your adult child falls ill, your alternate can ensure that probate is carried out without delay.

Choosing the right executor dramatically increases the odds that your final wishes are carried out. You can help your executor by revealing the locations of key assets or by leaving clear and concise instructions in your will.