Once a person has completed his or her estate plan, they may need to change it if they have children, their assets increase or decrease or there are other circumstances that cause the original plan to no longer fit their needs. They may not know how to approach changing the executor of the will.
The executor is responsible for carrying out the terms of the will. He or she has responsibilities such as starting the probate process, paying outstanding debts and distributing assets to the beneficiaries, among others.
The person who makes the will may need to choose a new executor if the original executor passes away, cannot fulfill his or her duties due to illness or disability, he or she has a disagreement with the executor or there is another person better suited to carry out the responsibilities.
The person who made the original will can choose to create a new will that names a new executor. However, it is important for him or her to ensure that all copies of the previous will are destroyed. This can help avoid will challenges in the future.
Another option is to create a codicil to the will, also known as a written amendment. The codicil should clearly name the new executor and the date the change will take effect. It will need to be signed and witnessed. Then, it can be attached to the original will.
An experienced estate planning attorney can provide guidance and advice about creating a new estate plan or amending an existing one.