You're getting your estate in order. The most important thing you can do is choose a personal representative. Your personal representative will make sure that your estate is administered properly after you pass away. Before you choose someone, you need to make sure that they will put your needs above theirs. It's also important that the person you choose is over the age of 18 and mentally competent. In addition to the requirements described above, here are four other requirements you should consider.
Be Knowledgeable About You
Your personal representative will be dealing your estate after you pass away. To ensure that your estate is handled correctly, they'll need to be knowledgeable about your personal life as well as your estate. Having a thorough and personal knowledge of you will ensure that your representative has the information needed to deal with problems that might arise.
Attention to Detail
Even a simple estate requires attention to detail and organizational skills. Each individual category of the estate will need to be handled individually. Some of the categories will include:
- Personal property
- Financial obligations
In addition, filing deadlines will need to be met in a timely manner. It's important that the person you choose to be your personal representative have a keen attention to detail.
Ability to Communicate
Your personal representative will be dealing with your family members while they're grieving your loss. They may also be arguing over details regarding your estate. Your family may not be happy with the probate process or with the appointment of a personal representative. Your representative will also be communicating with court clerks, attorneys and creditors who want your estate processed quickly. The person you choose to represent your final wishes should be able to communicate effectively.
If the person you're considering for your personal representative has a busy schedule, you may want to consider choosing a different person. Your representative will need to work on a tight schedule, even if your estate is small. Your representative will be overseeing the distribution of your estate. For that matter, it's important that you choose someone who has an open schedule.
When making your final estate planning decisions, one of your most important decisions will be your personal representative. Be sure to choose someone who will work with you during the planning stage and be there to oversee your final wishes when the time comes. The information discussed above will help you choose a representative that will carry out your wishes in a timely and efficient manner. For more assistance making your final estate plans, be sure to speak to an attorney who has experience with estate planning.