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WA-Probate > Probate-Litigation > Objecting to the Appointment of a Personal Representative
Before or after the appointment of a Personal Representative, any person interested in Decedent's Will may file an Objection to the appointment of any nominated or appointed Personal Representative, and following the filing of such an Objection, the Court is required to hear and determine it. RCW 11.28.020
a. Before Appointment. Practically speaking, little opportunity exists for objecting to the appointment of a Personal Representative except in two situations within 40 days after Decedent's death:
Decedent died survived by a spouse, and the nominated Personal Representative is
not the surviving spouse or his/her nominee.
The nominated Personal Representative is not the person in highest priority order on the statutory list of possible nominees.
In either of these two cases, notice of hearing on the appointment is required to be sent; its recipient will therefore obtain knowledge that an appointment is imminent and may object to it.
b. After Appointment. The Court "for any cause deemed sufficient" has the authority to cancel the Letters of Administration of any Personal Representative it has appointed and to appoint another in its place. RCW 11.28.160 The Court is required to revoke a Personal Representative's Letters of Administration if, following their issuance, a Will of the Decedent is found that is admitted to probate. RCW 11.28.150 A person of higher priority entitled to Letters of Administration waives his/her right to object to the appointment of a person of lower priority by failing to seek his/her own appointment or to object to the latter's appointment within the first 40 days following the intestate's death. RCW 11.28.120
3. Lack of Notice
These statutes provide authority for filing objections to the Personal Representative's appointment. The problem, as discussed above, is that in most cases, while one may have authority for filing an Objection, one won't likely have received Notice of Hearing on the Petition. Consequently, practically speaking, one can only likely object following a Personal Representative's appointment.