Is the executrix of a Will responsible to inform the beneficiariesof the sale of property that they are entitled to?

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Is the executrix of a Will responsible to inform the beneficiariesof the sale of property that they are entitled to?

A father died and left his real estate to be sold and divided between his widow and son. The widow is executrix and never informed the son of the sale.

Asked on January 1, 2012 under Estate Planning, New York

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.  I can see that the issues here are causing great strife on top of the death of your Father.  Generally speaking, the person named to be the fiduciary of an estate - the executrix - has great power under the law to administer the wishes of the decedent and probate the estate.  Those powers are, however, kept in check by the requirement of a fiduciary to "account" for their actions - literally - in an accounting procedure.  She does not need your permission to sell the property unless selling it may violate your rights under the Will, but even then if she is acting in accordance with the wishes of the decedent the law could back her.  It sounds as if the executrix is following the wishes of your Father.  If you think otherwise seek legal help and bring a copy of the Will and all legal documents involved.  Good luck.


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