In Texas, you can use your will to appoint an executor to complete your will’s instructions after you pass. If you don’t choose an executor, the probate court will elect someone to settle your estate. In previous blog posts, we discussed the responsibilities of an executor and we identified the requirements for serving as a Texas executor, but we receive many types of questions about executors that we want to address. Read today’s blog from the estate attorneys at the Davidson Law Group to learn more.
Can I Name a Beneficiary as an Executor?
It’s important to name an executor that you trust, such as a close relative or spouse. Therefore, it’s common and legal for your beneficiaries and executors to be the same people. However, there are some potential upsides and downsides to this decision.
If you’re the sole beneficiary, your relationship with the decedent will make it easier to serve as executor. For example, you can notify other recipients who are likely close friends, and you can defer the executor fee, which means you wouldn’t lose any of the estate to taxes.
It becomes more complicated if the will’s executor is one of many beneficiaries. If the estate has significant debts to pay off, the executor may need to use the assets that would typically go to beneficiaries, presenting a conflict of interest.
How Many Executors Can I Choose?
Most people name one or two executors, but four executors can act at any one time. Consider some substitute executors if your first choice is unable to serve.
When the time comes, an executor can say yes or no to the responsibility. The person who agrees to serve can step down at any moment.
How Can an Estate Attorney Help an Executor?
If the estate has a significant tax liability, many types of property, or potential conflicts among heirs, an executor may need some help. Here’s how an executor can get help from a probate attorney:
- The hired attorney will act as a coach and answer any legal questions that arise. They may also perform research or prepare an estate tax return.
- If the probate court process is too difficult to manage, an attorney can take over probate. But, the executor still has the responsibility to make decisions with the attorney’s advice.
To learn more about how an estate attorney can assist you, consult with the Davidson Law Group today.
Contact the Davidson Law Group in Fort Worth, Allen, or Tyler
From wills and trusts to Small Estate Affidavit, the Davidson Law Group has many legal tools to assist you with the estate planning process. Our estate attorneys approach each client’s unique situation with empathy and attention to detail. Contact our offices in Allen, Fort Worth, or Tyler, or visit our website for more information.