How do you choose your personal representative?

On Behalf of | Oct 8, 2020 | Estate Planning |

Creating a will requires careful thought and planning. After all, there are a lot of decisions you must make. You have to consider how you want your property to be managed, how to distribute your hard-earned assets and who shall inherit that property.

However, these are not the only issues you must address when making your will. You also have to decide who will manage your estate after you are gone.

But how do you determine who will be your personal representative?

There are three questions you should consider

Generally, you want to leave your assets in the hands of someone you trust. This might be a family member, such as a spouse, child or sibling, as well as a close friend.

Regardless of who you choose to represent you and manage your estate, there are a few questions you should consider and answer when making this important decision:

  • Can they handle the duties of a personal representative? Personal representatives have a wide range of responsibilities under Pennsylvania law, including taking an inventory of your assets, filing and navigating the probate process, paying final bills and taxes as well as distributing assets among heirs and beneficiaries. You want to make sure your choice of a personal representative is willing and able to fulfill these tasks properly.
  • Is this person trustworthy and responsible? With all of the duties that personal representatives must complete, it is critical to affirm that you can count on them to handle your affairs with integrity and dignity.
  • Do they know your values? Even though you can make your wishes clear in your will, your personal representative should be someone who has a thorough understanding of your values and your preferences.

You want to leave matters in good hands. Asking these questions can help ensure you make the right choice when determining who will manage your affairs.

Is this person willing to be a personal representative?

You must carefully consider the questions listed above when determining who you would like to serve as your personal representative.

However, one of the most important questions to ask is whether your chosen representative is prepared and willing to take on these responsibilities. You do not want them to feel pressured or stressed when organizing probate affairs or managing your assets.

Choosing someone you trust to carry out your wishes the way you would want them to may be necessary to create a valid will, but it can also bring you peace of mind about your family’s future.