When filing a wrongful death case, the law requires you to use a personal representative who will act on behalf of all beneficiaries. This person is an executor of the estate.
Pennsylvania Code does acknowledge that in some situations there may be issues between the heirs and the personal representative. For this reason, there is the option to replace the representative during the wrongful death case.
Who can motion
If you are someone who will benefit from the ruling in the wrongful death case, then you have the right to request the removal of the personal representative. If you are not a beneficiary of the case, then you cannot make this motion to the court.
How it happens
The court will hear your arguments for why you want to remove the personal representative. You need to ensure that you have evidence and a solid case. Removing the representative will pause the wrongful death case, and it could lead to other delays as a new representative acclimates his or herself to the details of the lawsuit.
Why it happens
Lawmakers allow for the replacement of a personal representative to protect beneficiaries. They recognized that in some cases, the personal representative does not do a proper job, which can cheat the beneficiaries out of damages. To ensure the beneficiaries have some control, the law gives the right to remove the personal representative. Basically, this ability is a way for beneficiaries to protect themselves and ensure they have proper representation in the wrongful death case by someone who has their best interests in mind.