The executor of an estate is a position of great responsibility. Some executors take advantage of this position for their own gain, while others have good intentions but lack the necessary competence.
According to the Pennsylvania General Assembly, it is possible to remove an executor when his or her continuance would jeopardize the interests of the estate. It goes on to describe some specific grounds for removal.
1. Charge of homicide or voluntary manslaughter
A charge of voluntary manslaughter or homicide against the executor of an estate can be grounds for removal. However, a not-guilty verdict or withdrawal or dismissal of the charges can remove these grounds.
An executor who moves out of Pennsylvania or fails to maintain a residence here can face removal from his or her role. However, the court can direct the executor to furnish security to retain his or her role.
Physical or mental incapacity that prevents the executor from carrying out his or her duties could be grounds for removal.
4. Mismanagement of the estate
The court can remove the executor of an estate if he or she fails to perform his or her duties. This may be due to willfully wasting the estate, e.g., taking money or property from the estate for his or her own use. It could also be due to incompetent management without an intention to defraud.
It can be very disheartening to find out that a person managing a loved one’s estate is not carrying out his or her duties properly and is no longer trustworthy. Fortunately, this is a situation that surviving loved ones can correct through the courts.