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A revocable living trust was set up in 1997 by my

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A revocable living trust...

A revocable living trust was set up in 1997 by my Grandfather to provide for his son and two grandchildren. The trust was to be desolved when the youngest grandchild turned 25 years old. She turned 25 on February 24, 2017. At that time she was to inherit a house as well as a portion of the trust. When she returned to Stoneville, NC to claim her home the trustee refused to give her the house. The trustee's daughter was actually living in the house. She was told that she would only continue to receive $200.00 a month and nothing more. The $200.00 check is written from an account at Carter Bank in Stoneville NC titeled "George T Moore Trust". The trustee also refused to give the beneficiary a copy of the trust document. The beneficiary is learning disabled with a very low IQ and does not have the knowledge or finances to contest this. I raised the Beneficiary most of her life and have docments supporting these claims. I wrote to the District Attorney of Rockingham County concerning this matter. He advised I contact the Stoneville Police Department and the Department of Social Services. The Stoneville Police Department suggested contacting legal aide. Please give me advice on how to instruct the beneficiary to follow through with this matter. Without a copy of the trust agreement, how do we know if a crime is being committed? Thank you. My name is***** ***** Stoneville, NC 27048. I would love to send you the documentation I have.

Lawyer's Assistant: Since estate law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?

North Carolina

Lawyer's Assistant: What documents or supporting evidence do you have?

I have the death certificate of George T Moore. The beneficiary was removed by RCDSS from her parents and physical custody was given to me. She lived with me during her young life until she turned of age. I also have records done during her middle and high school years showing her disabilities and low IQ scores which were listed as "mentally retarded". She has maintained a residence for herself and her son who is 7 years old. She has no criminal background and has neverr held down a public job. She keeps children while her boyfriend works. She stays in contact with me often.

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

I also have a copy of ***** *****'s will that talks about the trust agreement. I have never had a copy of the trust and the trustee refused to give the document to the Department of Social Services when they took custody of the children.

Submitted: 7 months ago.Category: Estate Law
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
12/5/2017
Estate Lawyer: Roy Hadavi,
 replied 7 months ago
Roy Hadavi
Category: Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 1,382
Experience: Attorney at Law Offices of Rosenstein & Associates
Verified

Hi Pamela. My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney with extensive estate planning and administration experience. I would be happy to provide assistance. Please keep in mind that our conversation does not include an attorney-client relationship and this is for general information purposes only.

I am sorry to hear about this very difficult situation you are trying to help the beneficiary navigate. I know these matters can be very difficult when you don't know where to start.

Answer: The beneficiary is legally entitled to a copy of the trust and an accounting of the trust assets. This information is critical in order for the beneficiary to be certain that they are receiving what they are legally entitled to under the trust. If the trustee refuses to provide these documents, the beneficiary may bring an action in probate court against the trustee for breach of fiduciary duty. The trustee has a fiduciary duty to the beneficiary and is violating that duty by failing to provide these documents. The court will then compel the trustee to provide this information and may even order that the trustee be replaced.

Of course, as you can already tell, these matters can be very complicated, so you may want to retain an attorney to assist in this matter.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Thank you for your quick response. Please note that the beneficiary is mentally challenged and only receiving $200.00 a month for her support and support of her son. I have been legally separated from my husband for over 10 years and live on $580. monthly social security payments. I do not have the ability to financially help Delila with this matter. Are there legal services that would help her pro-bono or perhaps the trust could be made to pay for this legal assistance. I truely believe that Delila deserves whatever was provided for her in the trust agreement, the loss of having a home bothers me the most. Mr. Moore (my Grandfather) went to great lengths to see that she would have a home provided to her when she became an adult. This is in my opinion fraud and without help, I don't know how she will ever be able to prove it and this "trustee" will get away with this disgrace.
Estate Lawyer: Roy Hadavi,
 replied 7 months ago

Yes, there are legal aid services that can assist.

Here are a few samples, although you can search online to see if you find others that are more to your liking:

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Do you have an address for Legal Aid of North Carolina? I tried to get this information online and it actually sent me to this link I am using to talk to you.
Estate Lawyer: Roy Hadavi,
 replied 7 months ago

If you click on the link I provided above it will take you directly to their website.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Thank you. I will pursue that link in writing. One last question. Is it possible to file an action in probate court against the trustee for breech of fiduciary duty without an attorney? Could this be done with the help of the clerk of court?
Estate Lawyer: Roy Hadavi,
 replied 7 months ago

You can certainly do it on your own. It just may be difficult to navigate the process. The court should have a self-help clinic that can assist you. You may also want to call local law schools and see if any of them offer any free clinics for these types of matters.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
This is asking more for your opinion than anything else...Would it be a good idea to write to the trustee myself with the information you have provided to me asking for him to send the beneficiary a copy of the trust BEFORE we pursue legal action?
Estate Lawyer: Roy Hadavi,
 replied 7 months ago

Absolutely. As a first step, you can write a demand letter to the trustee, stating that if he/she does not comply, that you will assist the beneficiary in filing suit.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Thank you for your assistance. Please contact me if you would like to take on this case pro-bono. :-) I really appreciate your help and I will most definitely leave you positive feedback.
Estate Lawyer: Roy Hadavi,
 replied 7 months ago

You're very welcome and I wish you the best of luck!

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