Somewhere in England:
John is the only child of the widow Jane and sole beneficiary of her will. According to her wishes he was living in her house and managing her affairs while she was sick. When she died, it turned out that her will had not been recently updated: the latest copy, lodged with Darke, Stanić, Mills (solicitors), did not name John as an executor, but rather her late husband (John's father) and the partners of the law firm itself. I presume this means that the solicitors are effectively the sole executors.
If so: to whom, if anyone, are the solicitors now answerable for the time or money they take to obtain probate and administer the estate? Can they just take as long as they like, and invent busy-work and complications in order to charge the estate as much as they like?
What steps, if any, can John take to ensure that the impact on the estate is minimized?
EDIT: The Solicitors’ (Non-Contentious Business) Remuneration ￼Order 2009 seems like it might (?) apply. But even if so it seems extremely vague in stating, "A solicitor's costs must be fair and reasonable having regard to all the circumstances of the case..." Who's to judge what is "fair" or "reasonable"? What incentive is there for the solicitors to operate efficiently and with restraint here?