Unfortunately the felony conviction disqualifies you from serving as an executor. To be officially appointed by the court you will have to swear that you have never been convicted of a felony. I suppose that the attorney just assumed that you had never been convicted of a felony. It is however your obligation to disclose this to assure that you do not swear to something false (perjury).
Here is the Illinois statute regarding qualification to serve as executor. I have added the bold section.
(755 ILCS 5/6-13) (from Ch. 110 1/2, par. 6-13)
Sec. 6-13. Who may act as executor.) (a) A person who has attained the age of 18 years and is a resident of the United States, is not of unsound mind, is not an adjudged disabled person as defined in this Act and has not been convicted of a felony
, is qualified to act as executor.
(b) If a person named as executor in a will is not qualified to act at the time of admission of the will to probate but thereafter becomes qualified and files a petition for the issuance of letters, takes oath and gives bond as executor, the court may issue letters testamentary to him as co-executor with the executor who has qualified or if no executor has qualified the court may issue letters testamentary to him and revoke the letters of administration with the will annexed.
The court may in its discretion require a nonresident executor to furnish a bond in such amount and with such surety as the court determines notwithstanding any contrary provision of the will.
(Source: P.A. 85-692.)
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