Trusts & Estates Law/Removing an executor
I want to have my aunt removed as executor of my grandmother's estate. She is threatening to vandalize property and hide money unless we agree to sign away all property rights to her. Hiring an attorney isn't a problem, but how can I prove that she is mismanaging assets? I know she is using the money and my grandmother's credit cards for herself (her son maxed one out) but how do I go about proving it? Can I contact my grandmother's bank and the lawyer who wrote the will?
I want to hire a lawyer, I just don't want to go into this and wind up being unable to prove any of it.
Luckily this is a two edged sword. If you file a lawsuit you can force her to give you or subpoena the banks themselves to give you what you need. All you need is a "reasonable" basis to believe that fraud is going on. For her to quash the request she'd have to hire a lawyer and have a hearing and show that you are fishing. Why would a judge refuse you just a little assurance? I doubt it.
Now, know all this you could politely ask her ( or get a lawyer to ask her via demand letter) to turn over the information. Warn her that it is your right and if you are forced to sue, she will have to pay her own legal fees and yours if you prevail.
If that doesn't work then file a simple lawsuit. Your comment about not being able to prove it:
You may not if everything is on the up and up. However, my experience is suspicions in this context, unfortunately turn out to be well founded. If she disobeys a court order to turn over the records she could go to jail. Also the banks/credit card cos should respond to a subpoena. Unless you just have a wild imagine I think this is worth pursuing. Family disputes are the most common type of litigation. Isn't that sad?
Please don't forget to provide feedback on my answer.
P.S. You don't have to have a a lawyer to do this. You can do it yourself. It is not ideal but you can.