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Executor at loggerheads with client
Monday 16 July 2012
I am instructed by one of two lay executors appointed under the will of the deceased. The other executor is at loggerheads with my client and is acting in person. How should I proceed here?
At the outset, it will be necessary to explain to your executor client the potential pitfalls of this situation. Assuming that both executors are to apply for the grant of probate, they must act together and in agreement. If the executors are in dispute as to how the estate should be administered, it may be that you will find it impossible to make any progress with the administration without resort to the courts.
The Legal Ombudsman scheme rules also make it clear that it will accept complaints from ‘a personal representative of an estate of a person’. This may include the unrepresented executor.
Therefore, you should explain to your executor client that you will need to keep his fellow executor informed of the progress of the administration and in particular the costs to be incurred. If your client will not allow you to do this or the executors will not provide joint instructions, then you may wish to consider whether you are able to act at all.
See the Legal Ombudsman scheme rules.