You may have already begun your estate planning journey and have done a deep dive into a self-assessment. You may have had to answer many tough questions so far, but still, you have not completed the entirety of the process. Though you may have many aspects of your final affairs in order, you still need to choose a person who will handle those affairs on your behalf.
Choosing someone to act as the executor of your estate is not an easy decision. You may have a few people in mind for various reasons, like you consider them trustworthy or they know you well. However, it is important to remember that closing an estate is a long and difficult process, so choosing just anyone is out of the question.
Appointing an adult child
If you have children, you may have considered appointing one of them to act as your executor. This line of thinking is common, and many people do choose an adult child to take on this role. Of course, if you have multiple children, you may still have a difficult time choosing which one would best suit the position. Some factors you may want to take into consideration include the following:
- Age: Age can play an important role, but it does not have to be the sole deciding factor. After all, you may have a younger child who is more mature than even your eldest.
- Abilities: You may think that your successful businessperson of a child would be perfect for the role, but professional success does not always mean that a person could handle the probate process or have the time for it.
- Personality: Your executor needs to be at least somewhat personable and have the ability to settle conflicts rather than instigate or exacerbate them. Sibling squabbles can cause more problems during probate than many people realize.
If you have doubts, you may want to have a discussion with your children. You may find that one has no interest in the role, or one may tell you that he or she is happy to be your executor. Even still, one may not be able to because he or she does not live in New York. Still, it is important that you choose the person you feel will best represent your estate and who has the abilities needed to take on this important endeavor when the time comes.