How hard is it to obtain your California inheritance? That’s really a loaded question because our law firm deals primarily with clients who have a difficult time obtaining their inheritance. That’s why they come to us because they have some sort of problem that is preventing them from getting the money that they deserve – the inheritance that they deserve.
In a perfect world, your inheritance should be easy to receive. Especially when your parents went to the trouble of creating a revocable living Trust during their lifetime. The whole point of a Trust is that it’s supposed to be easy. You don’t have to go to probate. You don’t have to have the probate court or a judge oversee the passage of assets. The Trustee can do all of that. And if you have a good Trustee who knows what they’re doing, and who follows the rules, then, indeed, it is probably easy for you.
Those are not the type of cases that we deal with and they’re not the type of cases that, quite frankly, we see a whole lot because those type of cases don’t call our law firm. The ones that do call us are the ones that have problems.
Reasons Issues Can Happen with a Trust
Problems with an inheritance can come in many forms. Sometimes it’s a new Trust or Will amendment that suddenly changes the beneficiaries. The kids are disinherited and either one child, or some unrelated third-party, receives the entire estate. Sometimes it’s a bad actor who takes money from mom or dad before they die. The taking of assets can be done directly, or through the use of business deals that are made to look legitimate even though they are not. Sometimes it’s a bad trustee who refuses to follow the trust terms or refuses to make a distribution of assets as required by the trust. Bad trustees may also steal from the trust, mismanage trust assets, or hide trust assets from beneficiaries. While Trusts are meant to be easy ways to transfer assets at death, some people make the process much harder through their bad acts.
As a result, you may have a much harder time obtaining your inheritance than the next person. And people who encounter these difficulties are often surprised because they never thought these types of actions would happen to them. No one ever imagines that their parent will be undue influenced, or outright scammed, when they are sick and dying. And yet, it happens far more often than you might imagine. Further, it can happen to anyone no matter your education level, income level, net worth, or past life experiences. Everyone is potentially susceptible to inheritance abuse.
When abuse occurs in your family, you should know that you are not alone. It happens to many good people across California. You do have rights and you can stand up for yourself. But it is never easy. How hard is it to obtain your rightful inheritance? It may be harder than you could ever imagine.