AnotherVICTORYin Probate Court!
We are pleased to announce another successful outcome involving the removal of an executor who would not handle his duties. In this case, three siblings had placed their faith in their fourth sibling for more than eight years as he refused to sell their father’s home. All four children were due equal distributions from the estate. He did not reside in the home, and therefore the usual disagreement over living rent free was not part of the discussion. However, the executor did not want to clean out father’s home, and simply did not want to sell the home.
After a trial, the probate judge found that the executor had breached his fiduciary duties to his family members. He used more than $30,000 of estate money to pay for expenses related to the home over the last eight years including the payment of taxes, utilities, etc. The court found the executor personally liable for all of the expenses, and ordered him to turn over all accounting books, bank accounts, etc., to the successor executor. The court further ordered the executor to pay the estate more than $30,000 within 60 days. The new executor agreed to sell the home immediately and conclude all remaining estate matters within a reasonable time period. My client was awarded all of his attorney fees for bringing the matter against his brother.
Executors must know that any delays in the settlement of an estate is almost always frowned upon, and could cost them money from their personal accounts.