What can I do if I do not trust the executor of my father’s estate?

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What can I do if I do not trust the executor of my father’s estate?

As the youngest daughter, I am not named executor of my father’s estate. My older brother was and he is extremely cold to me. He doesn’t treat me well; I do not trust him. The value of my father’s estate is over $1 million. What steps can I take to protect myself? How do I know if assets are being passed fairly and what steps can I take to protect myself? Should I hire a lawyer?

Asked on December 27, 2011 under Estate Planning, New York

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Your older brother as the executor of the estate of your father owes you a fiduciary duty of good faith and utmost trust. He is required to submit periodic updates to the beneficiaries of your father's estate and provide you with copies of all filed documents with the estate.

If there is a probate attorney overseening the process, perhaps you would feel more comfortable speaking with him or her about the process as opposed to your brother? The assets of the state are listed under the penalty of perjury by the executor. If he is not being honest in the process, the court can issue a citation to appear and answer questions. If you wish to retain an attorney to represent you in the process, you can. However, from what you have written at this point, I see no need to have another attorney involved.


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