Breach of Fiduciary Duties

Breach of Fiduciary Duty

The personal representative, executor, administrator or trustee, of an estate assumes a role as fiduciary with respect to the estate. This means that the representative cannot engage in actions that contradict or violate his or her duty. He or she must act in the best interests of the estate.

If the fiduciary is living in the decedent’s house or allows a family member to live there without compensating the Estate and plan to vacate, can be a violation of one’s duty.

When you have evidence or suspicions that a fiduciary is acting out of self-interest, or has a conflict of interest, you can take legal action to hold that person accountable for breach of fiduciary duty. When that fiduciary has not been forthcoming with information such an accounting, you can bring an action seeking that information and their removal as the representative in charge of the Estate. The is just a few of the examples but there are many actions that one takes and may be in violation of his or her duties.

At the Law Office of Bonnie Lawston, we aggressively protect the rights of estate beneficiaries in claims involving breach of fiduciary duty. We have fought for the rights of residents of Suffolk County and Nassau County for more than 20 years.

Removing a Fiduciary of an Estate or Trust

The executor, administrator or personal representative of an estate holds a position of trust and responsibility. Several of the duties imposed on a fiduciary is that she/he must administer the estate or trust solely in the best interest of the beneficiary. The fiduciary has the duty to full disclosure or material facts when dealing with his or her own account, the duty to keep and render clear and accurate records, take reasonable steps to take, keep control and preserve the asset. Fiduciaries are not allowed to use the assets for his or her personal gain or benefit personally from same.

The fiduciary can retain the services for professionals for advice. However, the fiduciary is not allowed to live in the property owned by the Estate or allow a family member or friend to stay and not pay rent, improper gifts, self-dealing, commingling of funds, losses created by the neglect of the fiduciary, these are just some of many many examples of improper behavior that may amount to a breach of duty.

One must prove to the Court that their fiduciary relationship exists, that there was a breach of that duty, that financial damage occurred that can be rectified by the Court and that action is necessary to move the Estate forward and compensate the Estate.

Some of the remedies include compensation, surcharging the fiduciary, removal of the fiduciary, removing the specific property, reducing the compensation of the fiduciary.

A fiduciary role with respect to the estate and the heirs—he or she must not engage in self-interest or conflicts of interest, but must always act in the best interests of the estate. If you believe the executor, administrator or personal representative has violated his or her duties as a fiduciary, you can take legal action to have that person removed and replaced with another fiduciary. Additionally, if you believe that a potential executor will cause a problem, you can seek to prevent his or her appointment.

We can help you avoid such damages and breach. We can avoid the pitfalls and traps. We can stop the damage!!!!! We have years of experience, reasonable prices and many types of retainers to help get the services paid for.

At the Law Office of Bonnie Lawston, we will help you take legal action to make certain that estate fiduciaries honor their obligation to the estate. We will also help you seek their removal if they act in violation of the best interests of the estate.


Out-of-State Executor Attorney

We represent clients nationwide, if you are a fiduciary (executor, administrator, or trustee) an heir or beneficiary of a New York estate. If the decedent died in New York or has assets in New York State, we can help you. If you are chosen to represent the estate or if you are receiving an inheritance from a New York estate, contact our law firm today.

There are Two Types of New York Estates

  1. The Decedent resided in NY at the time of death and their domicile is New York at the time of death; or
  2. There are assets located in NY, at the time of death, and an ancillary proceeding is needed. The Decedent may have died elsewhere
New York estate & probate attorney

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