Historically, executor fees in Pennsylvania and how much can be charged by an executor, have been governed by fee guidelines as opposed to state statutory fees. For a review of a common fee guideline, see my article on the Johnson Estate Guidelines on Executor Fees.
As a result, the probate courts have always had the ability to review and to reduce fees that the judge felt were unreasonable. Courts have been especially willing to do this in cases involving disabled persons and minors.
Likewise, the family and beneficiaries have often requested that an executor charge lower fees than might be permitted where the estate administration is simple. This does occasionally result in some tension with the executor as beneficiaries who have never been an executor assume that all estates are simple. The reality is, that , estates with businesses, closely held stock, real estate and/or many beneficiaries can be very difficult and time consuming.
But, if you would like to know the identity of a very powerful party that has an interest in reducing executor’s fees then see my recent article in www.paestateplanners.com. To see the article on executors fees in Pennsylvania just click this link.
David M. Frees III writes extensively on the issues facing executors and trustees and advises banks, trust companies, and individuals on the issues involved in estate and trust administration in Pennsylvania.