To file a "Petition to Remove Trustee", 1. Do I need a case number? 2. If so, How do I get one?

Asked over 4 years ago - Newport Beach, CA

I have a twin. Our older brother has given us no accounting of the assets of my father since his death 3/7/09. My twin said there was a reverse mortgage and my brother denied it. He sold the house and I do not even know what the selling price was or how much money was owed to the loan company. He refused to have a funeral. He has just sent my twin and I a cashiers check and a hand written accounting of the expenditures. I don not accept this and need to know how to put a halt to this. I have no idea how much money he has lost, stolen or mismanged.

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Mark Allen Ziebold

    Contributor Level 10

    Answered . You should meet with a probate litigator to draft a petition to remove the Trustee for the reasons that you state in your question. If he has mismanaged the funds and has not given you an adequate accounting, then he is most likely in violation of his duties as trustee. Any kind of Petition for anything having to do with estates or trusts in Orange county will have to be filed with the Probate Court. Google "Lamoreaux Justice Center" in Orange County and you will find information on where it is located. The address is 341The City Drive, Orange, CA. If you go to the clerk's office of the probate court you will be able to file your petition and get a hearing date and case number.

    If you haven't sought out counsel regarding your situation, feel free to contact me on Tuesday after the holiday and I can have you speak to the trust and estate litigator in our Firm. In the meantime, if you have additional questions feel free to email me as well. Good luck with your case.

  2. Robert Jan Suhajda

    Contributor Level 17

    Answered . The bank is not going to show you any documents because you have not been appointed as an executor or administrator of his estate nor as the Trustee of his trust. Your brother is also not going to show you any documents either.

    So your only option is to go to court to get an Accounting.

    Cashing the cashier's check is not an admission that it is in full payment of your share so
    cash 'em.

    Any legal action depends on the size of the estate, but this is the problem with Living Trusts.

    Disclaimer
    Although the above response is believed to be accurate, it should not be relied upon as any type of legal advice. It is intended to educate the reader and a more definite answer should be based on a consultation with a lawyer. No attorney client relation is formed with me without a written contract.

    Good Luck starts with a strategy and a plan.

    Robert J. Suhajda, MS,CPA
    Attorney
    17721 Norwalk Blvd. #43
    Artesia, CA 90701
    562-924-8922

    Former financial auditor and controller. Admitted to US Tax Court, Income Tax, Bankruptcy, IRS representation, Fiduciary income tax returns, Estate and Gift tax returns

  3. Phillip Clarence Lemmons

    Contributor Level 10

    Answered . When you draft your petition make sure you ask the court to suspend and remove, seek an accounting and also assert causes of action for the various breaches of trust. You may also want to lock up his assets so you have a way of collecting any awards you may receive from the court.

    Here are answers to your specific questions:
    1.) Yes you need a case number;
    2,) The court clerk will assign it to you upon filing of the petition to remove.

    If you need any assistance with this matter, give me a call. My firm as been removing trustees, getting accountings and recovering lost/stolen trust assets for the past 12 years.

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