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Who makes a good executor?

On Behalf of | Dec 28, 2023 | Estate Planning |

When it comes to deciding how your estate will be handled after your death, it is important to pick the right person to carry out your instructions.

The executor is in charge of making sure all debts, taxes, and expenses are paid and, ultimately, dividing and distributing your estate pursuant to the instructions in your will.  Because this is such an important job, you should consider some of the most important qualities your executor should possess.


A good executor needs to be someone who will take the job seriously. That person has to be reliable and able to assume all of the duties that are imposed on the executor in administering an estate. From handling the assets to answering beneficiary questions, the executor will have many responsibilities, and he or she needs to both be able and have the time necessary to handle all the that is required.


A successful executor is extremely organized. Dealing with an estate involves handling lots of paperwork, managing deadlines and working with professioal advisors.

An executor must also be able to keep detailed records.  Selecting a person who is generally disorganized in his own life is setting that person up for failure.

Clear and direct

Being able to communicate well is also important. An executor must be able to speak plainly and clearly  to explain the administration process to the beneficiaries and creditors of the estate. The executor will also be working closely with your professional advisors and must be able to keep them informed on her progress.  Basically, the executor is the person who will answer all of the questions posed by anyone with an interest in your estate.

Skilled with money

Yuor executor does not need to be a financial expert, but he does need to at least know a little about managing finances. This person should be comfortable with reading through financial documents and should understand basic accounting.  The executor can hire financial experts, but he still has to know enough to determine whether the “experts” are doing a good job.  Ultimately, any losses to the estate are the responsibility of the executor unless they are incurred despite all of his best efforts and advice received.

The effort you put into selecting the best person to serve as executor of your estate will ultimately benefit your beneficiaries.