A will is an important component of any estate plan. With this in mind, a factor of high importance is who you select to be executor of your will. In many cases, those creating a will already know who they will select to be the executor. But for some, it may not be so easy. In cases where a person does not have a reliable family member or friend present in their life, they may not know who to select as the executor to their will.
What is an Executor and What Do they Do?
Simply put, an executor is someone that you choose to manage your estate and act in accordance with your wishes following your death. The executor is the person who will protect your property after your passing, and ensure that all bills are paid off. The executor is also responsible for distributing assets to the appropriate individuals named in the will.
What if You Do Not Have Any Family Members or Friends to Name as Executor?
As mentioned above, if you do not have any reliable family members or friends to name as executor of your will, the situation may seem tricky. However, there are some options that you have if you find yourself in this scenario. Alternative options include naming a charity as your executor and hiring a professional executor.
Selecting a Charity as Your Executor: What You Need to Know
If you have a particular cause that you are passionate about, and a specific charity that you have donated to often during your life, selecting that charity as your executor may be an option. It is important to note that the charity in question, or any charity, is under no obligation to accept the role of executor.
If you do select a charity as your executor, there are some important factors you will need to keep in mind. First, you will want to select a charity that is both a stable organization and that is meaningful to you. This can give you the peace of mind that your wishes related to the charitable cause will be carried out as you want them to. You should include contact information for the charity in your estate plan documents.
In addition, it is important that you discuss your plans to name the charity as your executor prior to your passing. Remember, the charity is under no legal obligation to accept the role of executor of your will.
What is a Professional Executor?
Another option you have is to hire a professional executor. As with the charity, it is important that you include this person’s contact information in your estate planning documents.
Alternative Executor Options: What You Should Keep in Mind
While selecting an executor provides you with some options, it is also a good idea to select someone as a backup executor. This person or organization should be reliable and trustworthy, just as the executor should be. Choosing a backup executor will protect you in the case that your original executor passes away or becomes otherwise unable to carry out the terms of your will.
Why Having an Estate Plan is Important
Even if you think you do not have much property or other assets to protect following your death, it is nearly a guarantee that you do. It is of high importance that you protect any property you have, and ensure that said property is passed on to whomever you would like to have it. For assistance creating your estate plan, contact us today. For more information regarding various estate planning and elder law topics, read our previous blog posts.