Is an executor of a will or estate not performing their duties satisfactorily? This failure puts family members, friends, and other beneficiaries in a difficult position. You may need to involve yourself legally to get the executor removed and someone else placed in charge of the estate and distribution. But how can you accomplish this? Here are three methods, depending on your situation.
1. Talk With the Executor
Heirs, beneficiaries and others who have a personal or financial stake in the will may opt to begin by having a respectful conversation with the executor. This can help because there may be legitimate reasons why things don't seem to be going as fast or as efficiently as others expect. Once concerns are addressed in a direct and professional manner, conflicts may be easily de-escalated.
Unfortunately, this conversation may not be an easy one, and the family may want to work with an independent attorney or mediator to help discuss hard subjects. They may recommend measures to increase transparency, more recordkeeping, weekly or monthly meetings, or involvement by specific individuals to help manage some assets (like a business stake.)
2. Request Court Removal
If the executor simply cannot or is not doing their job and won't step down for an alternate, heirs and other stakeholders (including creditors) can ask for a hearing to determine if the court will remove them from this position and appoint someone else. If you are successful and the estate is benefitted, the court can order the estate to pay for the hearings. If not, you may be on the hook for costs.
3. Contest the Will
A more serious means of negating the named executor is to litigate the will itself. Since an executor is a person chosen in the will, the will must be legally valid in order for their appointment to be enforceable. If you have cause to believe it's not, this is a route to removing both.
For example, a will that is too broad and undefined may leave too much room for the executor to make bad choices. In this case, following state intestate rules could provide a better outcome for the estate and its heirs. But first you need to have the will invalidated.
Where to Start
If you or others have come to the realization that the estate executor isn't acting in the estate's best interests, you must act quickly before more damage is done. For more information, meet with an estate litigation attorney in your state today.
I'll be up front: I have a criminal record. As someone who's spent lots--and lots--of time looking for a job in my life, I've gotten used to being up front with this fact. It's difficult to get hired with this on my record, and frankly, it never gets less scary to have to tell an interviewer about it. But that doesn't mean I'm unemployable. I'm a hard worker who can bring a lot to any company. And I also know what an employer needs to do for me. I know my rights. There's no federal law protecting me from discrimination due to my record, but there are plenty of state laws that make it a little easier for me. If you're looking for a job and you have a criminal record, read through this information. Protect yourself during a job search. Know your rights.