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Is a family member your best choice for executor?

On Behalf of | Aug 15, 2020 | Estate Planning

As a California resident crafting your estate plan, you need to select an executor. This is often a source of contention and mental debate for many. After all, your executor will carry out your estate after you pass. This makes them an incredibly crucial figure.

Because of this, you might lean toward appointing a family member as your executor. But is this always the best option?

Professional traits of good executors

Forbes gives succinct tips on how to select an executor for your estate. Many revolve around the type of traits that successful executors tend to share. For example, many good executors have strong organizational skills. They are able to communicate well with others. Sometimes, they have experience leading big projects. Leadership experience is not necessary, though.

Also, good executors will get along well with you. This differs from person to person, as everyone has different personalities and opinions. This is a more subjective measure of an executor’s worth, but it is still important. You do not want someone handling your affairs if you disagree on guiding principles.

The skills family members possess

A family member often has an advantage when it comes to the latter category. After all, you likely spent time growing up together. They probably know you well, and you share a similar understanding. Unfortunately, family members do not always hold the skills of a professional. Even if you get along with them better than anyone, it is for naught if they cannot manage the estate. For this reason, a family member is not always the default “best option”. You will need to do your research with care.