Are you entitled to an inheritance under a trust, but the person in charge is mistreating you? Here are some of the ways trustees mistreat beneficiaries:
- Refusing to provide information
- Unreasonably withholding distributions
- Ignoring communication with the beneficiaries
- Exercising favoritism
- Misappropriating trust assets
- Failing to comply with trust terms
- Self-dealing or stealing trust assets
- Living in trust property rent-free
- Allowing trust property to fall into disrepair
- Arbitrarily delaying trust administration
- Mishandling trust investments
- Allowing illegal activity on trust property
When a bad trustee is in charge, beneficiaries feel exploited and helpless. Often, there is no oversight of the trustee. It can feel like a bad trustee has free reign with no repercussion. If you are being mistreated by a trustee, you may need to act to hold the trustee accountable. But how?
The good news: you may have legal recourse. An attorney can assist you in filing a petition with the probate court. You can demand transparency from the trustee. You can force the trustee to provide you an accounting, communicate with you, and be held liable for handling the assets in the way intended by the trust creator. You can require responsiveness and full disclosure about the status of the trust administration. You can even request a court order for removal of the trustee, or repayment of misappropriated funds, if the trustee has breached his or her fiduciary duties. Trustees must either play by the rules or be held accountable.