Can I have an executor removed from a will after 4 years of nothing?
The will states my sibling as executor and that the estate will be shared and shared alike with all siblings ,nothing has been done in 4 years meanwhile monies in bank are being eaten up with taxes and the house is going to fall to disrepair. What can be done . I have been named as successor if he is unable to handle the distribution of my Father's estate. So do I have any recourse?
6 attorney answers
You need to speak with an estate attorney regarding filing a petition for removal of the appointed executor. But definitely seek legal counsel on this one.
I agree with Mr. Portnoy but talk to a probate atty. . Go to AVVO.com, find a lawyer and put in the specialty area and your geographic location and attorneys should pop up. You can call a few and see about prices and availability.
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If the executor has wasted estate assets, the court could potentially remove him. The strength of the argument will depend on the specific facts of the case. You should discuss them with a probate attorney.
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You will not be "removing" the executor since his name will always appear in the will. He is issued Letters Testamentary which gives him power to act on behalf of the estate. If he is not acting then a court can revoke the letters and appoint you. Has he been issued letters?
You can access every New York County's Surrogate' court on the web. If you read the Court's website they strongly suggest if not encourage legal counsel to represent any Executor. The reason is that Executor's sometimes forget their fiduciary duties. If you ask him what that term means and he is unable to answer you then retain an attorney and go to the Surrogate's Court with him or her.
An Executor has a fiduciary duty to properly and fairly administer the estate of the decedent (deceased person). The Executor must distribute the assets of the estate to the beneficiaries and provide a detailed, accurate accounting of the estate. In addition, he or she has a duty to pay all debts and taxes related to the decedent's estate. You should request an accounting from your sibling if you believe your father's estate is not being administered properly. If your sibling does not respond, you should file a Petition to Compel an Accounting by the Executor. The court will issue an order directing the Executor to account within 30 days. You should retain an attorney to handle this matter for you. If it is determined that your sibling is not handling your father's estate properly, you may have grounds to remove him or her as executor of your father's estate via filing a petition to remove him or her. You should speak with an attorney about this matter.
You can ask the Surrogate's Court to remove the executor for cause, which could include unnecessary delay or wasting estate assets.