My father left me a trust fund to which my mother is the trustee. After my fathers passing my mother and I have had a falling out and I would prefer to not have her involved in my life in anyway. I would take me trust to a trust company, but the trust includes rental properties to which a trust company will not deal with. I am the soul beneficiary and the trust becomes mine at age 35. I am currently 26 years old and cannot handle nine years of dealing with my mother. She sparingly gives me fund from the account when I ask for them. She has recently denied me funds because "she feels like ". I'm wondering if there is anything I can do about this?
As to your options, that will depend on what the terms of the trust dictate. Generally a beneficiary does not have the ability to modify the terms of a trust that he/she did not create. However, as the other attorneys indicated, a trustee is a fiduciary, and they must be reasonable in their actions in light of the terms of the trust and trust law in general.
I would suggest that you consult with an estate or elder law attorney in your area. You can locate one on this site or at naela.org. A good elder law attorney near you is Michael Erde.
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In general, if a trustee (even your mom!) is violating their fiduciary duty to the trust and its beneficiaries (that would be you) the probate court has jurisdiction to remove the trustee and substitute a suitable alternative.
The trust agreement will define what your rights are to income and/or principal and whether the trustee may be removed (and how) short of a court action. I would first consult with an attorney to help you understand your rights and the responsibilities of the Trustee. If it is clear that your mother is violating her duties as trustee, the attorney should be able to point those shortcomings out and hopefully get the trust administration on the proper track. Court action would be the last resort if the trustee fails to act properly.
The will (if the trust is a testamentary trust) or trust agreement (if the trust is a living trust) will dictate whether or not you have the power to terminate a trustee and appoint another. You should read the document very carefully.
If the trustee is not following the terms of the trust, it would be wise to consult with an attorney who is experienced in trust litigation.
Good luck to you.
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