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Barrister
Barrister, Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 33713
Experience:  15 yrs estate law, real estate. Wills/Trusts/Probate
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we have had a lot of bickering about dads estate, since he

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we have had a lot of bickering about dad's estate, since he died in Jan. Now it is time for the 4 beneficiaries (siblings) to get the inheritance, and the executor, a brother, is saying we have to sign a statement that we won't sue him before he releases the checks. This is Ohio. The estate was in a Trust and did not go thru probate. Can he legally hold our money if we won't sign this statement?
Hello and welcome! My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
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The estate was in a Trust and did not go thru probate. Can he legally hold our money if we won't sign this statement?
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Technically yes he can try to do so until a judge orders otherwise. This is because as the trustee (this is a trust) he has the right to obtain a release from each beneficiary stating that they have received their full inheritance and releases him from any further liability under the trust. When I am acting as trustee for a trust, I always have all beneficiaries sign a release when they get their distributions strictly for liability reasons.
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With that said, if you feel that he has done anything improper, you can request a full accounting of all trust assets and any disbursements from the trust. He should have provided all beneficiaries this already as a part of his duties as trustee. The beneficiaries have a right to know what was in the trust and where it went unless there is a confidentiality clause in it. Then he wouldn't have to disclose the specific amounts that each beneficiary got.
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Any beneficiary can file a "motion to compel" in the probate court to have a probate court review all the records of the trust to determine if anything improper has occurred. You can also request that the judge order him to distribute any assets without signing the release so if evidence is later discovered, you could still go after him for anything illegal or improper that he did.
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Barrister
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

the trust has a no contest clause. would do any of those actions be construed as contesting?

No, requesting an accounting and inventory is not considered "contesting" the trust. These are legal rights that the beneficiaries have with regard to the trust. A no contest clause is only triggered if a beneficiary challenges the actual trust gift claiming that they are entitled to a larger inheritance.
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Barrister
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