17 May 2015

Facing Mortality: What to look for in a personal representative

My housemate's mother passed away in July 2014 and my housemate is acting as the estate's personal representative. This post is inspired by her experience.

Things to look for in a personal representative:
  • Trustworthy-- you are giving them full control over your estate. 
  • Practical-- they should be good at following up on deadlines and dealing with the basics of life like paying bills. 
  • Detail oriented/ organized: they will be keeping up with their household responsibilities and yours for an uncertain amount of time (particularly if you own your home). 
  • Physically and emotionally capable (or with good support systems of their own). 
  • Lives near you (preferably less than an hour away). 
Note that none of these is "related to you". If you have a relation who can be this person, Huzzah! However, don't feel bad/guilty about recruiting a friend instead (but tell your family once you do so it is not a surprise). 

Think of it this way-- your personal representative is going to be going though your underwear drawer and likely learning a lot more about you than you can imagine. Pick someone you trust-- not someone who you think it is your duty to pick.

No comments: