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Is a family member your only option for estate executor?

On Behalf of | Mar 8, 2021 | Estate Planning |

New York residents like you put massive amounts of effort, time and assets into crafting your estate. You put just as much into creating an estate plan, which means you should have a solid foundation. 

In other words, you need a good estate executor to ensure that everything runs smoothly after your death. You might start looking at family members right away for potential executors. But is a family member your only – or even best – option? 

Professional skills of an executor

Forbes discusses ways to choose an executor for your estate. This often boils down to the traits and skills an individual has, rather than their personal relation to you. For example, you want someone with strong leadership and organizational skills. It helps if your choice has headed large projects before. They should have the ability to manage their time well. 

A good executor must also work well with others. After all, they will act as the contact point between your lawyer and your beneficiaries. They will have to deal with grieving individuals and legal professionals alike. They will also work with financial professionals, so experience there can help, too. 

Does a family member have these skills?

If you select a family member, the biggest bonus is how well they know you and your family situation. This can help them avoid mistakes that someone unaware of your situation may make. But you can teach an unrelated professional about your family situation. It is harder to teach a family member all the professional details they need to pull off the job. 

In the end, the choice is entirely up to you and what you value the most in an executor. But it can help to talk it over with a legal professional before making a final decision.