The act of drafting a carefully considered will is an important first step within the estate planning process. Many in Ohio overlook, however, the importance of selecting the best possible executor. In many ways, this choice is pivotal in having one’s wishes carried out when the time comes. Even the best wills can be improved upon by making a sound decision when it comes to choosing one or more executors.

The executor begins by filing the will with the proper probate court, which initiates the probate process. He or she is also expected to settle and debts held by the estate, and to notify all banks and other relevant institutions of the death. The executor will also gather and protect the assets held within the estate until the probate process is complete. It is also necessary to maintain any assets, such as a home or vehicles, until probate is settled.

Because there are so many duties assigned to the role of executor, it is important to select an individual who is trustworthy. It is equally important to choose someone who is both able and willing to handle these tasks in a timely manner. A loved one who is trustworthy and holds the best possible intentions is still a poor choice as executor if he or she is already overwhelmed with personal or work obligations.

Once an executor has been chosen, Ohio residents should sit down and discuss their expectations with the potential executor. This will give him or her a good overview of what the role entails. It can also help identify any potential problems that might occur, and give all parties the chance to remedy those matters. Many wills encounter trouble during the probate process, and having the right executor in place can make those issues far easier to solve.

Source: itemonline.com, “Experience and training make the difference in estate planning“, Aug. 9, 2015