How do I appoint an executor to my Pennsylvania estate?

older woman sitting with younger man

Many people underestimate the importance of planning their estate. However, if you’re ready to embark on this process, taking the time to understand the various steps involved is critical. Generally, one of the most important things you must do is appoint an executor. Not sure what this is or why you need to do this? The following blog explores what you must know and why you should connect with Pennsylvania estate planning attorneys to help you during these complex matters.

What is an executor?

Before you learn what steps you must take to appoint an executor, it’s crucial to understand what role this individual plays in your estate plan. Generally, the executor of an estate is someone who will oversee the distribution of your will, though they have a multitude of additional responsibilities. For example, if your estate must go through probate, they will handle this process, while also paying any remaining debts, filing taxes, and caring for assets until they are distributed.

What steps must I take to appoint an executor?

If you wish to appoint an executor, understanding how to do so is critical. Generally, the first step you must take is to carefully consider who you wish to assume this role. It’s important to understand that the only requirements are that the individual must be over 18 years old and of sound mind. As such, you can choose almost anyone to appoint to this role. However, given the nature of this responsibility, you should think carefully about this.

Your executor should be trustworthy and reliable. If you have concerns about their ability to handle the duties WORD in this position, you should consider an alternative option. Additionally, this person should be someone who does not have a history of fraud. For example, if your cousin was fired for forging books at their old job to pocket money, you should not choose this individual. It’s essential to appoint someone who will honor your wishes to ensure your beneficiaries are cared for following your death.

Once you have made this decision, you will then name them as the executor in your will. It’s also wise to ensure that you list an alternative option in the event your first choice is unable to fulfill the role.

Should I connect with an attorney?

When you are ready to create a will, connecting with an experienced attorney is critical. Unfortunately, many assume they can create a will by themselves due to the number of websites with “DIY” estate planning options listed. However, doing this without the guidance of a lawyer can lead to mistakes that invalidate your will, meaning none of your wishes will be honored upon your passing.

If you are ready to start the important process of planning your estate, connecting with an experienced attorney from Friedman Schuman is critical to providing peace of mind that your wishes will be honored after your passing. Connect with our team today to discuss your wishes and learn how we can help you provide for your beneficiaries.

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