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You can challenge an unfair executor

Many people might think that dishonest executors of a will mostly exist in stories. Unfortunately, it is a reality for many families. Whether it is through the undue influence on the creator of the will or bad faith, some executors might seek to take advantage of the situation.

Challenging the executor during probate can be a long and challenging road, but it is often necessary to protect your loved one's legacy and your rights. But first, it is critical to understand the situations when you can contest the executor.

1. They are unfit

Even if your loved one thoroughly vetted the executor of their will before they passed away, life can change quickly. Sometimes, those changes can make executors unfit to complete their duties. Executors might not be prepared to properly take on their responsibilities if they:

  • Face a life-threatening medical condition or diagnosis
  • Have a felony on their criminal record
  • Recently filed bankruptcy
  • Are currently involved in another legal matter

In these cases, the executor might agree that they are unfit as well. However, they might dispute the challenge simply because they promised their loved one they would execute the will or because they protest the new proposed executor. 

2. They shirk their duties

There are times when an individual might be qualified and competent under Texas law to be an executor. However, that does not mean they will properly complete their necessary duties. 

Executors must:

  • Submit their loved one's will to the probate court
  • Notify specific agencies of their loved one's passing
  • Take an inventory of their loved one's assets and estate
  • Pay any debts or taxes left on the estate
  • Distribute the assets of their loved one's estate according to the will

If an executor does not complete these duties, then beneficiaries might have reason to file a complaint. It is helpful for all beneficiaries to understand the duties of the executor, so they recognize when an executor is not properly executing the will.

3. They do not follow the will's instructions

If executors disregard their duties or the instructions in the will, that is considered executor misconduct. Other examples of misconduct might include if the executor:

  • Shows favoritism to specific beneficiaries
  • Withholds money from beneficiaries for no reason
  • Uses assets from the estate for personal matters 

These are very serious violations of an executor's legal duties. And as a beneficiary of your loved one's will, you have the right to take legal action against an improper executor.

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Brock Upham Yost PLLC
616 E. Blanco Rd.
Suite 202B
Boerne, TX 78006

Phone: 830-275-5607
Phone: 830-816-9033
Fax: 830-584-0774
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