Being named as an executor means you may have to mediate disputes that arise between beneficiaries and other family members. This can be a difficult position to be in, especially since you are also a family member.
While arguments among family members aren’t uncommon, you can take steps to reduce them as an executor. This will make the entire process easier and less stressful for everyone.
1. Make sure to communicate often
Beneficiaries will worry and become impatient if they don’t know what’s happening with their family member’s estate. When you are named executor, you must ensure you provide regular updates and information about what’s been done and what still must be done. Doing this will help set expectations and reduce the likelihood of arguments.
2. Be honest and upfront
Always disclose any information and details about the estate to the beneficiaries. While you may worry that some information may start an argument, it’s your job to keep everyone informed. This means being honest and upfront, even if the news may result in disagreements.
3. Don’t mix your money with the estate’s money
When you spend money out of the estate, beneficiaries will pay attention. It’s possible to use funds in the estate to settle it; however, this doesn’t mean you should mix the estate’s money with yours. While it may be tempting to pay for something yourself and then repay yourself out of the estate, it’s best to avoid doing this. It can lead to issues in the future.
Fulfilling your responsibility as an executor
If you are named as the executor of an estate, make sure you keep the tips here in mind to avoid disputes among beneficiaries and family members. You can also seek legal advice if needed.