Choosing someone to carry out your wishes after your death isn’t as simple of a process as it may seem. It’s important to think carefully about who you choose as your personal representative (also known as the executor of your estate) and why.
Some considerations to make when choosing a personal representative are found below:
Consider who has the time
You may want to name your child or children as your personal representative. However, if they have demanding jobs, families and other responsibilities, being named as this may be a burden. Try to find someone who doesn’t have as busy of a schedule. For example, a sibling, friend or another family member may have more time to handle the responsibilities of this role.
Don’t choose based on arbitrary characteristics
You may be tempted to name someone as your personal representative because they are your oldest child or closest relative — but that can be a big mistake if they’re ill-suited to the role. Make your decision based on what you believe is best.
Choose a person that is best suited to the role today
If you have young children, it doesn’t make sense to appoint them as your personal representative. Instead, choose a parent, spouse, sibling or someone else who is older. You can update this later in life when your situation changes. It’s always best to choose someone who could handle the role today, not in the future.
Selecting the right personal representative
Choosing the right personal representative for your situation and needs is important. You can also learn more about your legal options and rights to determine who is best suited to take on this role after you die or become incapacitated.