Choosing an executor for an estate is an important decision no matter the size of the estate. California residents may want to consider the following when making this decision.
An executor is an individual who is appointed to administer the estate of a deceased person. Essentially, the executor’s primary duty is to carry out any instructions left by the deceased in regards to managing final affairs and wishes.
More specifically, an executor is responsible for ensuring all assets are accounted for and ensuring that those assets are transferred to the correct party. These assets may include things like financial holdings, money market, stocks, bonds, and real estate.
Almost anyone can be an executor of a will. However, there are a few exceptions. For starters, children under the age of 18 cannot be executors. Additionally, felons typically cannot be executors.
Other things to consider is that some states have limitations on out-of-state executors. Out-of-state executors may be required to also be primary beneficiaries. In addition to this, some states may require out-of-state executors to obtain a bond to insure the estate against wrongful use.
When choosing an executor, individuals should consider someone who is honest, organized, and communicates effectively as they will be responsible for ensuring the estate is in tact and allocated to all the right places. Aside from this, individuals should consider where their executors live as their may be a lot of business to tend to such as court appearances, mail checking, and property maintenance. It’s important to have someone who is able to handle all of the responsibilities associated with being an executor.
For individuals planning their estate, hiring an estate planning and trust litigation attorney experienced in probate law may be the best option. An attorney can maintain estate assets, sell or transfer the property assets as necessary, and successfully distribute assets to heirs and beneficiaries.