How to Find the Right Personal Representative for Your Will

November 1, 2018

Writing a will is an important part of making sure that your loved ones will be taken care of when you’re not there anymore. Choosing the right Personal Representative (executor) for your will can be as important as the contents of the will itself.

Last Will and Testament document with quill pen and handwriting

Choose Someone You Trust

Though it may seem obvious, you should always choose someone that you trust as your Personal Representative. Your Personal Representative does not need to be an accountant or attorney, but they should be level-headed, organized, and trustworthy. The right candidate will have some business or financial acumen, common sense and good judgment.

Though estate planning can be an emotional process, remember that choosing the right Personal Representative is a practical matter. You shouldn’t worry about who will be unhappy or who is the eldest child, as much as who is the right person for the job.

Minimize Legal Disputes

The Probate process, coming right after a death and maybe a long illness, can put a lot of strain on families. Some people may act out their grief, and siblings or family members who once got along well can end up at each other’s throats over petty matters. This turmoil will only lengthen the probate process and sow resentment through the family.

When you choose your Personal Representative, you will want to pick someone who can help minimize these potential issues. That may mean that none of your children should be named. It all depends on your specific situation.

Remain Flexible and Wise

The right person today might not be the right person ten years from now. You may pick a suitable Personal Representative now, but you should not feel bound by or “sentimental” about that decision. Practicality and the good of the family are the most important factors when it comes to these choices.

If you are re-doing your Will, you should give yourself permission to change the Personal Representative if the person you chose originally is no longer a good fit. If you think it might sow dissent and despair within your family, you don’t have to tell anyone whom you’ve chosen.

DK Rus Is Your Estate Planning Lawyer

If you’re looking for an estate planning lawyer in Maryland, to write a trust, a will, or help with any other aspect of the process, DK Rus is a good choice. Call today at 410.591. 6992 for a free consultation. We can help you draft your will or trust, choose an executor, avoid probate and taxes, and anything else you might need.

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