An executor is a person who holds a lot of power in your estate, especially after your death. For that reason, you want to pick someone trustworthy, reliable and responsible.
You might lean toward selecting a family member because you grew up with them and know them well. But an executor needs more than just a good personality and a background you find agreeable.
Why choose family?
CNBC talks about some of the most common people chosen as executors. Family members often top that list, tying with spouses in many cases. Many people will choose to leave their estate in the hands of their children or siblings in particular.
You may follow a similar logic, thinking that you want your estate managed by someone who knows you well. After all, who better to ensure that your wishes get met than someone you grew up with? You know how they think and what their views are, and you can trust them to follow through with your wishes.
Skills an executor needs
But an executor requires many more skills than trustworthiness. It is up to them to manage all of your estate affairs after your death. This includes dealing with debt collectors and taxes, dividing your assets and passing them out, communicating with your legal team, dealing with your bereaved loved ones and more.
They must have the ability to cooperate, meet strict deadlines, stay organized, juggle many different complex matters at the same time, and manage everything without crumbling under the pressure. Unfortunately, not every family member can meet these necessary requirements. Before picking a relative to fill this crucial role, you should ensure that they can.