Someone will need to handle the distribution of your estate when you die. If you name them yourself, they’ll be known as the executor. If you don’t name anyone, then a court will appoint someone who’ll be known as the administrator. Making the choice yourself is preferable as you cannot tell who a court might appoint.
So how do you set about choosing an executor? You think about what qualities the role requires and try to find the best possible match for that. No one will be perfect.
You need to be able to trust this person, as you won’t be able to keep them on course once you are gone. While a probate court will typically supervise things, it is possible to avoid probate altogether, so having someone you can trust keeps things simple and reduces the chance the assets end up where you want them to.
Willingness and availability
You need to find someone who will be only too happy to do this for you. It’s effectively a voluntary role, although they can claim some expenses, and it can take considerable time and effort. If someone is only doing it because they feel obligated to, they might not do a good job.
Maybe you are thinking that you don’t know anyone with legal experience, that you don’t know anyone who has executed an estate before. Don’t worry, you don’t need to. All you need is someone who is organized, reasonably intelligent and happy to communicate with others. Most executors learn as they do it, and most do just fine. Besides, there is always legal help available should they wish.