In re Estate of Boren, 268 S.W.3d 841 (Tex. App. – Texarkana 2008, pet. denied).

Estate Administration

Independent Administration

Named Executor Deemed Unsuitable


The trial court determined that the named independent executor was unsuitable under Probate Code § 78(e). The appellate court

reviewed the evidence and determined that the court did not abuse its discretion by acting in an arbitrary or unreasonable manner without reference to any guiding rules or principles. There was evidence that the named executor acted inappropriately when he was serving as the agent for the testatrix and her husband in a variety of ways such as using the principal’s property, misappropriating funds, and not paying bills.

Moral: Strong evidence is needed to overturn a trial court’s finding that a named executor is unsuitable.




Validity of Disclaimer


Beneficiaries signed disclaimers of all property to which they would be entitled from Testatrix’s estate prior to her death. On the same day that Testatrix died, Beneficiaries filed revocations of those disclaimers. The trial court held that the disclaimers were effective.

The appellate court reversed. The court explained that the disclaimers were not filed in accordance with Probate Code § 37A but instead were filed in the papers of Testatrix’s spouse’s guardianship. Filing in the wrong place is both against the letter of the law and the policy of the filing requirement which is to give notice to creditors and prospective purchasers. Because Beneficiaries revoked their disclaimers before they were properly filed, their attempt to revoke them was successful.

Moral: A disclaimer should be filed in the appropriate location as mandated by Probate Code § 37A.