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by Abigail Van Buren

Dad Finally Writes His Will and Names Surprise Executor

DEAR ABBY: I am 30 years old, the only child of divorced parents in their late 60s. Neither of them has remarried.

Because of certain family events, I encouraged Dad to create a will four years ago. He never had one because he doesn't have much money or any property to bequeath, but my understanding is that putting things in writing helps immensely when the time comes.

The will Dad finally produced is a cookie cutter one from the internet and not even notarized. But I was most surprised when I saw he had named his sister as his executor. Is this normal for people with adult children? I feel my parents are my responsibility to care for as they age. Assigning this duty to my aunt, who will be at least in her 70s when Dad passes, feels like an undue financial and emotional burden on her. Am I allowed to talk to him about his choice of executor? -- DAD'S KEEPER IN WASHINGTON

DEAR DAD'S KEEPER: Subjects like these are often sensitive and difficult to address. However, you are "allowed" to talk to your father about any question you wish. Explain that you always assumed it would be your responsibility to take care of his affairs if he was unable to, and ask him why he chose the person he did to be his executor. He may not have wanted to burden you with the responsibility or had other reasons for naming his sister as his executor. In the final analysis, the decision was his to make.

Read more in: Family & Parenting | Death