Q: Who should I name to be Executor of my Will?
A: Choosing an Executor is one of the most important decisions you make when you plan your estate. When you name someone as Executor you are giving them a job with substantial responsibilities, not just an honorary title. Being Executor can be time-consuming and difficult, and holds the potential of personal liability for mistakes made.
The Executor is responsible for carrying out the administration of the estate, filing necessary documents in Probate Court, collecting the assets of the deceased, paying debts, distributing the assets as directed by the Will, and filing any necessary tax returns. The job can last 9 to 12 months if there are no problems. In a complex estate with assets that may be hard to manage or sell or where family relationships complicate the administration, the executor’s job can last for several years. The Executor can be held personally liable for mistakes such as distributing all the assets before the taxes are paid. [Read more…]