Administration actions—removal of personal representatives—practice and procedure
Produced in partnership with Mark Lindley of Boodle Hatfield
Administration actions—removal of personal representatives—practice and procedure

The following Wills & Probate guidance note Produced in partnership with Mark Lindley of Boodle Hatfield provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Administration actions—removal of personal representatives—practice and procedure
  • Renunciation of the right to administer an estate
  • Removal under section 116 of the Senior Courts Act 1981
  • Removal under section 50 of the Administration of Justice Act 1985
  • Practical issues with orders made under section 116 and section 50
  • Removal under section 1 of the Judicial Trustees Act 1896
  • Once the estate is administered
  • Costs

There are a number of circumstances in which it may be desirable, or necessary, to seek the removal by the court of personal representatives (PRs), ie the executors or administrators of an estate. These circumstances include where:

  1. a conflict arises between the interests of the PR and their own interests

  2. the persons with the primary entitlement to a grant are unwilling or unable to get on with the administration

  3. there has been a breakdown of trust and confidence between the PRs and the beneficiaries, which is impeding the due administration of the estate, or

  4. there is an issue that needs dealing with urgently and before a full grant of representation can be obtained

It is often not straightforward to remove a PR. Given the nature of the office of the PR, it may even be necessary to apply to court to remove and replace a PR who is willing to step down in favour of someone else.

Renunciation of the right to administer an estate

An executor appointed under a Will (or other person having a right to administer an estate) can voluntarily waive their right to obtain a grant. When an executor renounces, then their rights in respect of the executorship cease, but other than this, the administration of the estate continues as if they had never been appointed. The