What are some hidden signs of a manipulative executor?

On Behalf of | Dec 23, 2023 | Will Contests

In the aftermath of a loved one’s death, the process of handling their estate can be emotionally taxing. Dealing with an executor, the individual responsible for administering the dead person’s wishes, should ideally be a straightforward experience.

However, some executors may employ tactics to manipulate the situation for their benefit.

Withholding information

A sneaky executor often hides what they are doing by not being clear in their communication. If you are struggling to get straight answers or notice them talking in circles about the estate, that is a red flag. Genuine transparency can help ensure everyone involved understands the proceedings and feels confident in the executor’s decisions.

Isolating beneficiaries

A manipulative executor might try to keep beneficiaries from talking to each other. This is a move to stop everyone from sharing worries and information. It can also impact their mental health, which can be a dangerous side effect since 21% of American adults stated in 2020 that they struggle with mental health.

If you observe the executor discouraging discussions among heirs or intentionally limiting information flow, it may be an attempt to consolidate control and limit opposition.

Delaying distribution without a valid reason

Timely distribution of assets is a big aspect of estate administration. A manipulative executor, however, might intentionally delay the process without providing valid reasons.

This delay can be a strategic move to gain leverage, control or even to pressure beneficiaries into accepting unfavorable terms. If you notice unnecessary delays, it is important to question the motives behind them.

Failing to explain expenses

A responsible executor manages the estate’s financial aspects well. If, however, you notice unexplained expenses, questionable financial decisions or a decline in the estate’s assets without reason, it raises concerns. A manipulative executor might take assets for personal gain.

Ignoring beneficiaries’ input

Effective communication involves considering the opinions and concerns of all parties involved. Sneaky executors might ignore what you think or say, pushing aside your worries. Recognizing this is important to make sure the executor respects what the person who died wanted and what you and others want too.

Knowing these signs can help you make sure things are fair when it comes to dividing up assets. By learning more, you can feel confident during this challenging period.