In most cases, the person who has been chosen or appointed to oversee a North Carolina estate will have the estate’s best interests in mind. However, this is not always the case. If an executor fails to live up to his or her fiduciary duties, it may be possible to select a new estate representative.

 

Why an estate representative may need to be replaced

 

An estate representative may be replaced if he or she engages in gross mismanagement of funds or other resources that belong to the estate. This person may also be relieved of his or her duties for failing to comply with court orders. Finally, an individual generally cannot act as an executor if doing so would create a conflict of interest. It is important to note that simply being a beneficiary does not necessary cause a conflict of interest to exist.

 

An estate representative may be replaced if he or she engages in gross mismanagement of funds or other resources that belong to the estate. This person may also be relieved of his or her duties for failing to comply with court orders. Finally, an individual generally cannot act as an executor if doing so would create a conflict of interest. It is important to note that simply being a beneficiary does not necessary cause a conflict of interest to exist.

 

Only parties with standing can file a request to remove an executor

 

Generally speaking, only beneficiaries and creditors have standing to file a petition to remove an executor. If your motion is granted, a hearing will be held to determine if the current estate representative should be replaced. You must let the executor and other interested parties know that the motion has been filed and when the hearing will take place.

 

The loss of a loved one can be a stressful and traumatic event, and legal battles during a probate proceeding can only exacerbate the negative feelings that you and other surviving family members may experience. If you have reason to believe that an executor is acting in an illegal or irresponsible manner, it may be a good idea to consult with an estate administration attorney to see what your options are.