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By: Scott Grossman on June 18th, 2018

Removing an Administrator: How to go about it and having someone else was appointed administrator of the estate?

If your spouse predeceased you, it is possible that another individual was named administrator of his estate. Fortunately, you may be able to go about removing an administrator and having yourself appointed instead – if you are of higher priority as determined by the California probate code. The process may take time, however, and should not be delayed.

An overview of steps to take in Removing an Administrator of your deceased spouse’s estate:

  • First of all, contact a probate litigation lawyer for guidance through the administrator removal process.
  • Furthermore, gather evidence that supports your claim that you are either the spouse of the decedent or are entitled to receive all or part of his or her estate.
  • File a petition for removal of the administrator with the appropriate California probate court, or select a nominee to do so on your behalf.
  • Additionally, verify that you did not receive actual notice when the administrator was in the process of obtaining his or her appointment.
  • Furthermore, verify that you did not have an opportunity to contest such an appointment.
  • Gather evidence that supports your claim that removing an administrator will not go against the “sound administration” of the estate.

Key Terms: 

  • Estate (noun): An estate includes the things that a person owns. The things left by someone who has died can be distributed based on a Will, Trust, or Intestate laws. Estates have to be administered in the Probate Court if the estate meets certain criteria. See our Infographic on The Probate Process.
  • Litigation (noun): Litigation is the act or process of bringing a lawsuit to enforce a particular right. This can include Will contests, Trust Litigations, and Probate Litigation.
  • Administrator (noun): A California administrator is a person entrusted with the responsibility of administering the estate of a deceased when the deceased passed without leaving a validly executed will. California probate laws and intestacy rules dictate which individuals can serve in this role, how an appointment as administrator is obtained, and how and to whom the administrator must distribute the property of the deceased.


If you are ready to start your case, then please give us a call or fill out our Get Help Now form. A comprehensive overview of California Probate is available here. Should you have additional questions about trust litigation, you will find plenty of useful information in our Learning Center.