When you make your will, you will need to appoint an executor or executors to administer the will when you die so that your estate is distributed as per your wishes.
So, how do you choose a suitable executor for your will? Read on for a helpful guide.
Appointing an executor/s
You can ask family members and friends to be executors, even if they are also to be beneficiaries under the terms of the will. If you prefer, you could ask your solicitor or accountant to act as executor in a professional capacity.
It's a good idea to appoint between two and four executors as a contingency in case one of them dies before you do. Multiple executors might also be a good idea if your estate is large and complicated, as there will then be more than one person to carry out all the work involved in putting the estate through probate and administering it.
It is courteous to ask someone before you name them as an executor under your will. The role of executor carries considerable responsibility, and not everyone may be prepared to take it on.
Executors who are family or friends
If asking a family member to act as executor, it is important that you choose someone who will be capable of bearing the responsibility of carrying out the job.
Someone who is prone to ill health might not be a good candidate. You should also avoid anyone who has a history of mental illness or substance abuse or who has been in trouble with the police.
You should also bear in mind that asking a family member to deal with the administration of your estate could lead to family disputes and ill-feeling if one of the beneficiaries feels they have been unfairly treated.
Executors who are professionals
For very high value or complex estates, someone with experience in conveyancing or family law may be best placed to be one of your executors. People in these positions will be familiar with administering complex estates and will know how to deal with any problems that may arise during the process.
Note that professional executors may place a charging clause in the will that gives them authority to charge for any work the carry out on behalf of the deceased. They will also be entitled to claim back any out of pocket expenses that were incurred during the process of carrying out their duties.Share
25 January 2017
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