Can a beneficiary sue an executor?

Can you sue an executor? We have written about the importance of Wills. How everyone should have  a Will, to make sure that their assets go to the right people, etc. Have you ever wondered what happens when a disgruntled beneficiary decides to sue the executor of a Will? Is it to get a larger amount of money from a deceased person’s estate? Is it because they felt slighted by an executor? 

The executor is in charge of managing someone’s estate when the person in question passes on. This is listed in the deceased’s Last Will and Testament. The deceased person’s estate and assets are dispersed to the beneficiaries of the Last Will. There are rights that executors have when it comes to dispersing assets, including the right to collect a fee for their time and effort. This is all depending on where you live and what the laws are. Beneficiaries, on the other hand, have the right to request that an executor (for whatever reason) step down from their role, and upon request, receive updated information on the deceased’s estate, including information on the financial details of what was left behind. Again, this is dependent upon where you live. 

If a beneficiary feels that the executor is misappropriating funds from the estate, then the beneficiary may try to sue the executor, who is supposed to act in the best interests of the deceased’s estate. To sue an executor would mean a lot of paperwork and evidence of misappropriating funds. This would include the following: Failure to provide the proper financial statements regarding the estate when asked, delaying the dispersing of the assets without any proper reasoning provided, supposedly favouring one beneficiary over the other, not properly managing the estate, using the assets in the estate to make extremely risky investments, and an executor pretty much failing to meet the legal and financial obligations of his/her position. 

All of these can be grounds for the potential to sue an executor. You can read more, here.