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You may want a back up executor for your estate

Many people keep things simple when choosing an executor for their estate: They just go with a family member. In a lot of cases, it's actually ideal to use your spouse. After all, your spouse is the one who will see the most dramatic financial changes after you pass away, and he or she has the most invested in the estate with you. Giving the power to determine how assets are divided to anyone else may even offend your spouse.

So, is it as simple as writing in your husband or wife? Not really. You probably want to have a backup plan in place, as well. This is true no matter how old you are.

The issue is that both of you could pass away at the same time. This likely won't happen if you both pass away from simple old age -- though it can -- but it's common in accident cases. You and your spouse probably do a lot of your traveling together. A deadly transportation accident could easily claim both of your lives at once, meaning that there's no one left to be the official executor of the estate.

It's up to you who you choose as the backup. You may select a sibling, a child, or even a close family friend. You may give the job to your accountant or your lawyer.

The key is simply to plan for all possibilities, making sure that your estate is still distributed in accordance with your desires, no matter what happens. Be sure the legal plan you put in place gives you peace of mind and protects the interests of your heirs.

Source: AOL, "Who Should You Ask to Be Executor of Your Estate?," accessed Dec. 02, 2016

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