What isthe penaltyif the administrator of a Will does not execute their duties properly?

UPDATED: Sep 7, 2011

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What isthe penaltyif the administrator of a Will does not execute their duties properly?

My mother put my sister as her administrator on her Will. Now that my mother is dead, my sister is not doing what’s exactly said in the Will. What can I do?

Asked on September 7, 2011 under Estate Planning, Washington


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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss.   First, if your sister was names in your Mother's Will as the fiduciary she is known as the Executrix of the Will. As the Executrix she is bound to follow the wishes of your Mother as outlined in the Will. However she does have the power under the law to deviate from your Mother's wishes if the Will can not be carried out for some reason. For example, if the estate has many debts and she mist sell some of the assets - like an antique table - to obtain the revenue to pay the debts then she has that power.  She can not, however, choose to sell the antique table to spite the beneficiary when she can sell something else.  But you have the right to question her actions and if she is breaching her duty, have her removed. Seek legal help.  Good luck.

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