The Briefing: Choosing the Right Executor for Your Will: Guidance Beyond Family Members

The Briefing: Choosing the Right Executor for Your Will: Guidance Beyond Family Members

When it comes to choosing an executor for your will, it may seem like a difficult task if you don’t have any suitable candidates within your family. This is a common dilemma that many face, and it can be daunting to find the perfect person for such an important role. However, there are some helpful tips and considerations to keep in mind as you navigate this decision. Let’s dive into a few key points from “Before I Go: The Essential Guide to Creating a Good End of Life Plan” that may provide useful guidance.

Who Will Be In Charge? Considering Non-Family Executors

Think of the executor of your will as the person who will take charge after you’re gone, making sure your final wishes are carried out and avoiding any legal issues. But what if there’s no one within your family who can fulfil this role? Don’t worry – there are other options to consider.

Seeking Qualities Over Family Ties

When looking for an executor outside of your family, it’s important to seek out certain qualities. They should be trustworthy, organised, and financially astute to handle the important tasks that come with being an executor. 

Community Gems

Don’t overlook community members who have a solid reputation and the necessary skills to take on this role. People like your friendly neighbour or someone involved in local organisations can make excellent candidates, bringing social skills, empathy, and a sense of justice to the table.

More Heads Can Be Better Than One

Did you know that the number of executors can vary depending on where you live? For example, while Scotland doesn’t have a limit, England and Wales only allow up to four executors. So why not consider appointing multiple executors? This can help spread out the responsibilities and provide some extra security in case one executor is unable to fulfil their duties.

Communication is Key

Once you have considered your options and have chosen the right executor(s) for your will, it’s important to communicate this decision with them. This could be over a cup of coffee or during a casual chat, but it’s crucial that they understand the responsibility and honour that they have been entrusted with. It’s also a good idea to update your will, inform your attorney, and celebrate this significant step in safeguarding your estate.

Taking Care of the Details

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the legal aspects of choosing an executor, don’t worry – it’s always best to seek advice from a legal professional. They can guide you through the process and ensure that your final wishes are carried out with care, respect, and precision.

Now Take Action!

Make a list off the top of your head as to who it could be – just brainstorm, no judgment as to their capacities at the moment.  Think as widely as you can, regardless of whether you think they would say yes or no.

Once you have your list, go back over it and filter them through the above points. Choose your preferred people, and then approach them. 

Ideally, they need to know what you have in your will at any time, and they definitely need to know its location. If you are choosing an online storage vault then make sure they are authorised to gain access to your account after you have died.

Get More Information

Choosing an executor is just one of the topics in our self-paced online end of life planning course, the Before I Go Method. Check it out here.