Executor Found Guilty of Stealing Inheritance

The fundamental duty of an executor in connection with the administration of the estate, is to administer the estates to the best interests of the beneficiaries, this is a fundamental rule that has been passed down generation after generation, and there is a considerable amount of caselaw relating to this subject.

When Mrs Border passed away in August 2015, her estate was left in the hands of ‘a good neighbour’, entrusted to act as executor and distribute £110,000 each to the pensioners partner, Mrs Cullen, and to longstanding friend, Parminder Gibbs.

Whist Mr Loveday the executor 33, followed through on his duty for the amount to Mrs Cullen, Mrs Border’s friend received nothing.

Parminder Gibbs had to resort to a High Court bid, in an attempt to get hold of the £110,000 inheritance.

The Court heard how Mrs Gibbs had initially attempted to claim her share of the inheritance, but was denied through lies and delay techniques.

Aiming to remove Mr Loveday as an executor of the Will, it was during the proceedings that it was discovered that Loveday had ‘frittered away’ the money on cars, holidays and debts.

Unusually having been locked up for six months after refusing to show where the money had been spent, Loveday was sentenced to a further three years and seven months after admitting fraud. The sentence however had been delayed numerous times, as Loveday had stated the amount was being held in an ISA, however proof of such had never materialised.

Parminder Gibbs and her husband had to re-mortgage their home to pay the legal fees, but doubt has been cast on whether any of the money would be reclaimed by the couple.

Judge Brendan Finucane QC, stated that Loveday had:

‘Shown absolutely no remorse’.

‘It was an abuse of a position of trust, over a prolonged and sustained period of time’.

A Prosecutor said:

‘The Court has given the opportunity for the money to be recovered… there’s not a shred of evidence any such figure existed in any account anywhere’.

We are often consulted by beneficiaries who are entitled to monies, but for what ever reason either the executors, or more commonly in our experience the administrators (where no will has been made) take it upon themselves to distribute the monies as they think fit, and usually to themselves, without recourse to the rules of law. If that happens, then it is a criminal offence called fraud, and proceedings should be taken.

Often than not the vexed position as to costs raises its head, and these should be considered carefully, before any action is undertaken.

If you require help in connection with any of these matters, please do not hesitate to contact us.