Choosing an executor for your estate can be an emotional decision to make. Most people we see choose a family member as Executor and this is not necessarily the best decision. Just because they are family doesn’t mean they have the knowledge to handle the confusing paperwork needed to settle an estate. An Executor should have enough financial experience to be comfortable dealing with financial institutions, lawyers and realtors. Location should also be a factor in making your decision. An executor will have to be able to be available to attend meetings and to sign papers with family members and banks, brokerage firms, etc. If there is a house to be sold there will be liquidation of the deceased’s belongings as well as the sale of the house itself.
This whole process can take several months and incur considerable expenses to the Executor. Many experts recommend that the Executor be someone outside of the family. A Financial Planner, Attorney, someone who can be hired and held accountable. These professional may usually charge a fee approximately 1.5% to 3% of the value of the estate. Some states have rules for how and what an Executor is paid. All Executor fees are deducted from the taxable value of the estate.
It’s an important decision to make, but once you have all the important factors available to you your decision should be reached with confidence and ease. Please let us know how we can help you in reaching your decision.