Some Maryland residents who are in the process of estate planning may have wondered about choosing an executor. But many people do not stop to wonder what factors to consider when deciding whether they should act as executor for someone else.
One of the most important decisions to be made as part of estate planning is who should execute the will and ensure that the person's wishes are carried out. This is true even with small estates that have only limited assets. Thus, being chosen as an executor is a great honor. It is also a great responsibility. For one thing, the position can be time-consuming, even for those with financial or legal backgrounds.
An executor's job is to probate the will, which means going through a probate court with the supervision of a judge. Acting as an executor may involve locating the deceased person's asset and heirs, paying any bills, filing a final tax return for the decedent and distributing the remaining assets to heirs. An executor that does not adhere to his obligations or who acts without due care could be sued by creditors or beneficiaries of the will.
One way to ensure having an executor who is up for the job is to choose a local estate law attorney. The attorney who drafts a will may already be familiar with the contents before a person's death and therefore may have a better understanding of the person's wishes. That is one reason that many people choose an attorney to act as executor. When the chosen executor is a friend or family member, an attorney may be able to assist that person throughout the process and help navigate the probate court system, eliminating some of the confusing.