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Modern Estate Planning Blog

Elder Law & Special Needs Planning

Probate Lawyer in Gold River Says, “Plan For the Worst: Name an Alternative Executor.”

July 6, 2011

What would happen if the Executor of your will passes away before you do or simply declines the responsibility of administering your estate when called upon?

Believe it or not, this happens quite frequently, and if you don’t have an alternative named in their place, a judge (who doesn’t know you or the dynamics of your family) will be forced to step in and name a replacement.

For this reason, it’s imperative to name alternative beneficiaries, guardians, and executors of your will. The administration of an estate is a tough job—and you don’t want a judge choosing an executor who’s truly not cut out for the position.

Instead, take the time to choose alternative executors when designing your will, so you will have the peace of mind knowing that your wishes will be carried out properly by someone you trust.

Here are a few guidelines that the Gold River probate attorneys at The Chubb Law Firm suggest people follow when choosing an executor and an alternate:

– The person’s age. For obvious reasons, you’ll want to choose someone who will live long enough after your passing to properly administer your estate.

– Does the executor have a good relationship with your chosen beneficiaries and heirs? You may want to avoid choosing someone who has had previous conflict with the people that he or she will have to deal with after you die.

– Will the executor be honest and trustworthy? This also may seem like an obvious question, but make sure to choose someone who you can trust after you are gone (when you are not there to voice your opinion) as much as you do while you are alive.

– Is the executor organized and able to meet deadlines? There is a lot of paperwork involved during the administration of an estate, and tasks must be handled in a timely manner in order to comply with the court system. Choosing someone who you know is organized now can help ensure that they will treat your estate in the same manner he or she treats the tasks in their own life.

Want more tips on how to choose an executor, guardian, or beneficiary? Be sure to call me, your Sacramento probate lawyer at (916) 241-9661 and ask if you qualify for a free Peace of Mind Planning Session ($750 value).

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