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3 tips for being a good executor

On Behalf of | May 24, 2023 | Will |

While many South Carolina residents don’t want to think about the passing of a loved one, being an executor is both an honor and a great responsibility. Typically, people creating their estate plans choose a friend or relative whom they completely trust to serve as their executor. If you’re not sure how to be a good executor, keep some simple tips in mind.

Talk things through

While conversations about wills and other end-of-life decisions can be uncomfortable, talking to the person who chose you to be the executor of their estate is important. Ask the individual about their specific wishes, and then ensure they’ve included them in their estate plan. You can ask the testator to include a letter naming you as the executor to reduce potential conflict after their passing.

Protecting the property

Depending on the assets in the estate plan, you may need to take steps to protect the property entrusted to you. If the deceased individual left a house to someone in their will, you are responsible for protecting the property until the legal transfer occurs. Additionally, move values from an empty home to a place where people can’t take them.

Filing the paperwork

After the testator dies, nothing can happen until you file their will with the local probate court. It’s important to file the original will, as a copy of the will is not legally binding. You are also responsible for filing the death certificate with life insurance companies, banks, and other places where the testator had an account.

Being organized is perhaps the most important aspect of being a good executor. The person who chose you as their executor did so for a reason. Take your responsibility seriously and do your best to honor their wishes.