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TJ, Esq.
TJ, Esq., Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 12209
Experience:  JD, MBA
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My abusive elder sibling is the trustee,of my inheritance.

Customer Question

My abusive elder sibling is the trustee,of my inheritance. Growing up he was mean and temperamental and so forth, but he appeared to grow into a trustworthy adult with some financial acumen. At the time the will was written I had just become engaged for the 2nd time, my first marriage, to someone who wound up living on my income and stealing from me, having ended in divorce. My dad wanted to protect my inheritance because of this recent past, and included an in terrorem clause in the will.
I learned quickly that absolute power corrupts absolutely. Trustee's response to my first request for a small amount of funds ($800 out of $250,000) was "No, because I have my kids' college and my retirement to think of." One othet, of many instances of egregious behavior on the part if trustee is in 2014 he took money from my trust for himself. When I wouldn't sign a document for the Commissioner of Accounts saying everything was ok with the trust because of this, trustee withheld my money from me for four months, despite knowing that I needed it by then for rent, food and medicine; I have Crohns and was in the hospital for a month in 2011, which trustee knew. I wound up in the hospital again in 2015 because of trustee's actions. The Va. Commissioner Accounts even still did not remove him.
I need an attorney and advocate who recognizes that the in terrorem clause is allowing abuse and is violating my civil rights, or
The abuse continues. I have Crohns and it makes it an additional challenge to return to the workforce (I'm a business librarian, laid off in 08. I had requested funds for job training to advance my skills and make me a really unique, desirable job candidate; trustee responded "No, it's not your money and I can do anything I want and you can't do anything about it."
Thank you for your attention, and for any suggestions, referral and/or representation you may be able to offer.
Elizabeth ***@******.***
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 11 months ago.

Hello and thank you for the opportunity to assist you. My name is ***** ***** I will do my very best to help if I can. Please bear with me a few moments while I review your question, conduct any necessary research, and type a response. Thank you.

Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 11 months ago.

Hello again. I’m sorry to hear about these troubles.

The bot***** *****ne is that the trustee must do what the trust indicates. He cannot go beyond the scope of those powers. On the one hand, he was apparently given latitude and discretion as to when to distribute funds to you. On the other hand, I assume that the funds are there for the purpose of your care. Accordingly, the trustee should not withhold funds just because he’s upset with you. Particularly when the funds that you requested are to be used for your own betterment, such as for education or health. It is totally improper for the trustee to hold your funds hostage until and unless you authorize him to take some of those funds for his own personal use.

Accordingly, I would likely hire an attorney to petition the court to have your brother removed as trustee. Unfortunately, we are not authorized at this website to represent customers. However, you should be able to find a competent attorney by contacting your County’s Bar Association.

Does that answer your question? Please let me know if you need clarification, as I am happy to continue helping you until you are satisfied.

Expert:  TJ, Esq. replied 11 months ago.

Hello again. I didn't hear back from you, so I'm just checking in to make sure that you don't need more help on this issue. If not, then please remember to provide a positive rating via the stars (and note that your positive rating is the only way that I'll get credit for helping you, so I greatly appreciate it). Thank you!

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