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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 118073
Experience:  Experienced in Trust and Succession Law, including Louisiana Laws
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My husband who passed away was named in s previous deceased

Customer Question

My husband who passed away was named in his previous deceased wife's trust to receive 3% per year of the total in the trust as long as he was alive other then that he got nothing from the trust all the monies in the trust went to her sons. He had collected around 136,000 in the year he died. The trust wanted to do the 706 form and use my husbands exemption of 5 million dollars which saved the two sons 2 million dollars. My attorney agreed with this and I had so many forms to sign and very busy so I trusted what she said I then receive a refund check from the IRS which the trust wants but I have lost the ability to use my husbands exemption so we have a claim against the trust for I never gave them the right to use the exemption.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Estate Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
What is your specific question for us about this matter?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have yet to return the refund to the trust because I feel they owe me monies for using his exemption since the surviving spouse has the right to use his exemption
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did sign a paper in June that I would send the refund to them but my accountant says to keep the refund until they owe me for using my deceased husband exemption which I never agreed to. So my question is do I have right for some of the monies they saved by using the exemption?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your reply.
Well, they would owe you damages for using the exemption if their using the exemption would later prevent you or cause you financial harm in using it. Furthermore, the issue is that you signed a paper saying that you would send them the refund, this is deemed a binding contract and the courts hold that when a person signs a contractual agreement they are bound to the terms they agreed upon in the contract. Once you signed saying you would send the refund, your accountant makes no sense saying you do not have to send it to them. You said you "did sign a paper in June that I would send the refund to them," so you must send the refund to them or they can sue you for breach of contract and get the money from you and possibly even attorney's fees.
As far as using your husband's exemption, you would have to prove you suffered actual damages by them doing so, meaning showing you would suffer money damages from them using the exemption. Absent proving you suffered an actual monetary loss from them using the exemption, even if you sued there is nothing the court could award you without you proving monetary damages.