My mother gave me stolen money to start a business. Money is spent. Am I responsible for paying it back?

Asked over 1 year ago - Houston, TX

My mother took several 100k from my great aunt when she had power of atty. She gave me 100k to start a business but did not tell me she took the money illegally. Most of the money is spent and now other family members have retained an atty and are filing suit against me for the 100k. Am I responsible for this money or is there some defense I have? What are the potential penalties for such an offence. Again, I had no knowledge that this money was taken illegally. My mother said that she was able to gift herself this money. Any advice out there?

Attorney answers (4)

  1. William Asa Grafton

    Contributor Level 12


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You need a lawyer. An internet forum is not the appropriate place to discuss the merits of a case like this.

  2. William Fulton Broemer

    Contributor Level 14


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You are in a precarious situation. Making statements, in writing, on a public website like this, can be inadvisable. If your posts here are conclusively linked to you, they can become evidence in the lawsuit you describe. If you have been sued, you should immediately hire an experienced attorney to evaluate your defenses and represent you in the pending lawsuit. My firm would be happy to assist you with this matter. Feel free to contact me at

    Good luck.

    Your question has been answered as a courtesy. This is not paid legal advice. Nothing in this communication is... more
  3. Achmed Mirari Defreitas


    Contributor Level 10


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Additional information is necessary to answer this question, but I do not believe that you should present such information in this forum. You should call an attorney immediately and set up a consultation. Bring whatever documents you have regarding your Great Aunt's estate and the cause of action against you, including the power of attorney, if you do have it. Additionally, if the matter has ever been probated, provide the case number to the attorney so that he can look over the case and review the documents.

    The information provided above, by Mr. Defreitas, is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal... more
  4. Peter Joseph Lamont


    Contributor Level 18


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I would need more information before I could provide you with a proper response. However, I strongly suggest that you meet with a local attorney. You may have defenses to the lawsuit but you will need an attorney to help you properly respond to the complaint when it is filed and served. This sounds like a civil suit, not a criminal suit. You mother could have a serious problem if your family decides to pursue criminal action.

    If you found this Answer helpful, please mark it as "Best Answer". Your feedback is greatly appreciated. Peter... more

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