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When trying to decide whom to name as the executor of an estate or a trustee of a trust, many people turn to their children or close family members. Parents with more than one child often feel they should name the eldest; however, what should guide your decision is who is best equipped to do the job.

Here are some tips for choosing an executor or trustee:

Size of your estate. If you have a multimillion-dollar estate or trust, the skills needed to manage it wisely are more complex and necessary. If you are choosing someone to manage the assets of beneficiaries, someone with a financial background is a more practical choice. Whoever you choose to manage your estate or trust needs to have excellent organizational and management skills, as well as the objectivity necessary to perform their duties keeping in mind the best outcome for all beneficiaries.

Potential for family conflict. Especially in families with more than one child, you need to take into consideration the potential for family conflict in choosing one child to manage assets for the others. If it is clear that one child would do a better job than the others, take the time to explain your decision to the entire family.

Outside help. Some people find the best option is to name a corporate trustee such as a bank or other financial institution to manage trust assets. The professional skills and impartiality that outside counsel provides can be well worth the fees you would incur.

The Flanigan Law Group provides Southern California residents with personal attention for estate planning, administration and litigation legal services. When disputes between families, arise, they are very successful in resolving legal estate issues quickly and efficiently while preserving financial and emotional resources. Contact the Flanigan Law Group at 949-450-0042.