When creating a will, there is more to consider than simply what goes to whom. After you are gone and passed, someone will be responsible for executing your will.
Although you will not be around for the aftermath of dealing with your estate, you want to make sure you appoint the right person for the job – and choosing that individual can be a stressful and confusing endeavor.
What is an Executor?
An executor is the person responsible for following through on your will after you have died. This individual is in charge of sorting out your finances, making sure your debts and taxes are paid and distributing the remainder of your estate to your beneficiaries and heirs.
It is also the job of the executor to identify everything in your estate, including bank accounts, pension payments and life insurance payouts.
The executor does not control the estate – they are legally obligated to fulfill your requests faithfully and fairly.
Choosing an Executor
When choosing someone to be the executor of your will, it’s important to put feelings aside and look at the situation objectively.
Being an executor is not a position of merit or perceived importance – it’s a large responsibility and you want to make sure that the individual chosen can fulfill it.
When choosing an executor for your will and estate, consider the following:
- Someone you can trust. You want to be sure to choose an individual who can execute your will fairly and objectively.
- Someone who lives close by. An executor who lives out of town, province or even the country is going to face the long distance struggles of dealing with your family and assets. They will also face logistical challenges if a house needs to be sold or if local laws differ from where they reside.
- Someone who has a flexible schedule. Sorting out an estate takes time and there are many deadlines that must be met. You want to ensure that the individual has the time to properly execute the will and meet the deadlines.
- Someone who has some knowledge of taxes and finances. The majority of a will’s execution involves finances and having a basic knowledge of these things will make it easier for the executor of the will. For more complex estates, or foreseeable family conflicts, you may want to consider appointing an estate professional to plan your will and estates.
Professional Wills and Estates Planning
Wills and estates planning is recommended if you own a business or a large and complex estate. You may also want to consider hiring a professional to plan your will if you suspect that family conflict will make executing the will difficult.
Financial experts, such as the professional accountants at Lui & Associates, can ensure that your financial wishes are carried out correctly and legally.
We can tailor a plan to meet your specific needs, paying close attention to aspects of wills and estate planning such as:
- Estate valuation
- Tax elections
- Tax planning
- Estate freeze
- Family trusts
- Asset transfers
Having a professional prepare your will and estates ensures that your beneficiaries are protected legally and financially.
Our experts at Liu & Associates can handle any issue in regards to will or estate planning. Contact us today for more information about having your will and estates planning done proficiently and professionally.