When you choose a person or an entity to serve as the executor of your will, you are trusting that your property will be divided according to your wishes. What happens, though, when you do not have children or any relatives who are willing to execute your Florida will? For some people, finding just the right person can take more effort during the estate planning process.

During your estate planning process, you must consider two primary topics. First, you want to determine how you would like your assets to be distributed. Then, you have to choose the person who will make sure that happens. It can be difficult to identify someone to help with your estate; you might be surprised at how difficult it is to deal with even a modest estate. Count up your many estate planning documents — from living wills to health care directives, trusts, retirement accounts and personal items — and your executor can quickly be overwhelmed.

Experts say that people without children or willing relatives should consider a trusted friend to help execute their estate. This person will be responsible for resolving debts and tax burdens, so you want to choose someone reliable and honest. If you are unable to identify this type of a person, it is time to turn to a professional.

Florida residents can choose to entrust their estates to hired attorneys or financial planners. Banks also have trust departments that are set up to serve as executors. It is important to establish a relationship with these entities early to make sure you have the right fit for your estate. The professional route may be more costly than having a friend or family member handle your estate, but it is far more regulated. A financial expert or probate attorney may be able to help you choose the perfect executor for your needs.

Luis E. Barreto