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garlandca

$ Withheld from Final Distribution

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The jurisdiction is Riverside Co., Ca. DOD: 1/29/2009-my mother. My brother is the trustee and beneficiary and there are two other beneficiaries, myself and my other brother. My mother had a Trust, but 13 days before she passed (after 1 1/2 years of fighting cancer at 85 yrs od), ammended and completely restated her trust. We (the beneficiaries) never received a "Notice to Beneficiaries", or were provided with a copy of her trust, or an accounting. We received nothing. After contacting an attorney to request an accounting and "Notice to Beneficiaries" from my TTEE brother in November of 2009. The accounting we received was unacceptable. He hired an attorney that has paid 15K from the Family Trust. Now, the final distribution (minus 50K for "potential claims I have asserted") and accounting (which again is not acceptable) have been received. We have been advised if the Settlement and Release, plus "Appointment of Successor Trustee" (one designated by him) are not signed and returned in 16 days, the 50K will be retained for 3 years and "we" will be compelled to file a petition with the Court, the cost borne by our trusts.

I do not have the money for legal counsel.

Olamay

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Have no idea of any "notice" requirements in CA, but you'd be free to request an accounting. Of course, "unacceptable" is subjective (and you provide no details).

You don't explain the appointment of successor trustee part, but if the trust nominates him as successor trustee, I don't know of any CA mechanism that requires beneficiaries to approve his succession (or his appointment/designation of a successor trustee in case he gets hit by a bus). It may simply be something his attorney is counseling him to get from you to have it on record in case you ever want to challenge his nomination by your mom in her trust as successor trustee.

It's not clear what your question is or what you expect folks to say in the absence of one. This won't be resolved on a message board, I'm afraid. Many attorneys offer free consultations, and you could discuss payment arrangements then (in any event, if you don't have a few hundred for an hour of someone's time to ask them what is typical in terms of "acceptable" accountings, for instance, then you may want to wait until you can save that up).

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