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Estate administration: Qualities of a good estate executor

Creating an estate plan brings peace of mind as well as a sense of accomplishment. While there are many tasks involved in estate planning, one of the most important is selecting the right estate executor. This process calls for careful consideration and an attorney with experience in estate administration can provide guidance on your choice of executor.

An executor fills a critical role in estate administration. He or she must be prepared to perform many tasks such as handling tax matters and dealing with beneficiaries, to name only two. An executor's role is filled with responsibility and not just anyone is equipped to meet this responsibility effectively.

When the time comes for you to name the person who will be responsible for your estate administration, look for qualities like the ones below. This will ensure you have chosen the right person to be your estate's executor.

  • Knowledge and skill handling financial matters
  • Experience with issues relating to estate taxes
  • Ability to remain objective and impartial
  • Possesses honesty and integrity

Finally, the most important qualities to look for in an estate administration representative are availability and willingness to fill the role. You may know several people who possess the qualities above, but if they are not able to handle the many responsibilities that come with an administration role, they are not good choices.

For many North Carolina residents who are creating an estate plan, it is not as difficult as it sounds to find the right executor. A good way to begin is to bring your list of candidates to an attorney and begin a frank discussion about each prospect. Your lawyer can help you sort through your list and home in on just the right person to take on this critical role.

Source: Fiduciary Trust International, "Selecting an Executor for Your Estate," Oct. 30, 2017

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