Can someone who isn’t in the Will remove an executor?

Can Someone Who Isn't In The Will Remove An Executor

This is an actual Case Study

In Re Hartley [2020] QSC 251, Judge Henry of the Supreme Court of Queensland held that a person was able to bring an application for removal of an executor in circumstances where he was not a beneficiary of the estate but was an eligible person to make a family provision claim against the estate.

The applicant in the case was a son of the deceased. The executor of the estate was another son of the deceased.

The deceased did not provide for the applicant in her will for numerous reasons, including her past financial generosity towards him, his drug addiction and alcoholism, his imprisonment, his theft from her, her restraining order against him and the stress, rather than assistance, which he caused her during her illness with cancer.

The executor of the deceased had failed to administer the estate in a timely manner and the applicant was attempting to have his brother removed as executor.

While the Court did not remove the executor in this instance (and gave him another chance to “conduct himself consistently with his duties as executor”), the decision makes it clear that a person who is not a beneficiary of an estate but is an eligible person to bring a family provision claim against an estate (a spouse, child or dependent) has standing to bring an application for removal of an executor if the executor has failed to administer the estate. Very important reasons to ensure you act according to the law if you are the executor of an Estate.  If you need assistance, seek the advice of a professional.  Call RobertsLaw on 07 5530 5700 to make an appointment for advice.