The executor has a pivotal role in settling your estate, making sure outstanding bills and taxes are paid, disputes settled among heirs and assets distributed to beneficiaries. The role is thankless, time-consuming, stressful and overwhelming. You want to make sure the right person serves as your executor, someone who is trustworthy, reliable, financially savvy, tactful, organized and available.
But, now, you know it is time to update your will. Details and matters in your life have changed, so now this legal document is in for a revision. As you think about it, you consider that the changes should include naming a new executor. Why? Maybe his or her has changed, too. The person has gotten older, no longer has the energy or mental capacity for the role, or even has become estranged from you.
A divorce, a falling out
Here are some of the main reasons when you should consider naming a new executor:
- The death or ongoing health complications of the original executor. You need someone in this important role. An executor’s death leaves a major void. And should a serious health malady strike your executor, he or she may not be able to fulfill those duties.
- A better person would fill that role. What if your original choice was a parent, who has now aged and no longer has the energy or mental wherewithal to perform the tasks? Or what if you had selected your adult child, who suffers from drug addiction? It is time to name a new executor.
- Your spouse was named as the executor, but the two of you are now divorced.
- Your original choice wants to bow out, letting you know that he or she no longer wants to be in this responsible role.
- A falling out has occurred between you and the original executor, or perhaps you the two of you have drifted apart on diverging life paths. You want someone you can trust.
Your choice of the executor of your will is a crucial one. You must take time to think about the qualities of that person. And if certain things change whether in the health of your original choice or in your relationship with that person, then it is time to name a new executor.