Why 'The Wealthy Barber' refuses to act as executor for friends

RBC Wealth partners with David Chilton for estate planning campaign

Why 'The Wealthy Barber' refuses to act as executor for friends
Steve Randall

Raising awareness of estate planning options is the focus of a three-year partnership between RBC Wealth Management and ‘The Wealthy Barber’ David Chilton.

Chilton will collaborate with RBC's Estate & Trust Services division to write articles, appear in videos and host speaking engagements designed to encourage the general public to consider using the services of corporate executors.

Leanne Kaufman, President and CEO, Royal Trust, says that Chilton is the right choice to help Canadians understand the benefits of retaining a corporate executor and trustee.

"Thirty years ago, Dave brought financial planning to every Canadian household with his best-seller, The Wealthy Barber. Since then, he has continued to be one of our country's best known and most trusted experts in personal finances, using his humour to simplify complicated financial topics," she says. "That makes him the perfect partner to help us educate Canadians on the benefits of retaining a trust company as executor and trustee."

Chilton rose to fame after self-publishing his first book ‘The Wealthy Barber’ aimed at those with very little investment experience. He followed it up in 2011 in response to the financial crisis.

He also spent three seasons on CBC’s Dragon’s Den.

Executor role is a burden for family, friends
Kaufman says many people choose a friend or family member as the executor of their will, not realising that it is a large burden financially, emotionally, and on their time.

"Many executors tell us if they had known how difficult it would be, or the liability they would be assuming, they would not have accepted the role in the first place," she says. "And it's surprising how many Canadians aren't even aware that they can choose a trust company to settle their estate."

Chilton agrees that opting for a specialist to look after estate affairs makes better sense.

"I am a big believer in the benefits of corporate executorship. In fact, I refuse to take on the executor role for even my closest friends' wills. If you're wondering why, you've probably never been an executor," says Chilton. "I believe more Canadians should take advantage of corporate executors and I'm pleased to partner with RBC to help people through what can otherwise be an emotional and complicated process."