How Do You Remove an Executor From a Will?

Nov 18, 2019   ·   3 minute read
Male notary working with mature couple in office

If you have inherited a legacy, whether it is a part share in a house or a cash gift, you are reliant on the executors of an estate to sort out Probate , gather in the assets and then distribute the assets in accordance with the deceased’s Will.


The Executor of a Will

The executors of a Will are people chosen by the deceased to handle their Will. The executors could be family members, friends or professionals, such as a solicitor, accountant or the bank.


If the executors are friends or family of the deceased then the executors can hand over a lot of the responsibility for sorting out the deceased’s estate by instructing a probate solicitor to administer the probate and the sale of assets and the distribution of legacies to beneficiaries. Most lay people take this option as they are honouring the appointment made in the deceased’s Will but not leaving themselves open to criticisms about delays in payment of legacies or problems with securing probate.


However, a friend or family member appointed as an executor may not get on with the other executors or with the beneficiaries. The executor may say that they want to sort out the probate themselves, leaving the beneficiaries fearing there will be a delay in sorting out the estate and payment of legacies. In other situations, the deceased may have appointed a bank as his or her executor not appreciating that the bank’s charges for handling the estate may be a lot more than a local Cheshire probate solicitor. The additional administrative charges might be an issue for the beneficiaries as the costs of sorting out probate and administering the estate will be deducted from the estate before the residuary estate, after payment of any legacies, is divided between the residuary beneficiaries.


How do you Remove an Executor from a will?

If you think that an executor is not up to the job or you think that they are too slow or maybe acting improperly then a court application can be made. The court can make a wide range of orders including an order to remove an executor.


Cheshire probate solicitors normally recommend that you try to resolve the difficulties with an executor first before starting court proceedings. Sadly, that isn’t always possible and so, as a last resort, court proceedings can be started to secure an order to remove an executor.

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Avoiding Executor Problems

A good private client and Cheshire probate solicitor will discuss the choice of executors when preparing a Will. After all, it is important that the executors are not too elderly or frail to be up to the task and will be able to work with one another.


It is sometimes thought that it does not really matter who the executor is if the executors are just going to appoint a solicitor to sort out the estate for them. It is still important to choose your executors with care and to make sure that they are willing to undertake the task for you.


For assistance removing an executor or if you have any questions about probate or estate planning contact our expert family lawyers today