At this point the lawyer is either representing the successor trustee or no one. The trustee is likely required to provide you with a copy. I would either write to her requesting the copies or have an attorney do it for you. You do not say when your father died. If it was recent, the court might not have a problem with your not having the copie, yet. If the trustee refuses your written request, then I think you are going to need to hire a probate attorney and petition the court.
*** LEGAL DISCLAIMER I am licensed to practice law in the State of Michigan and have offices in Wayne and Ingham Counties. My practice is focused in the areas of estate planning and probate administration. I am ethically required to state that the above answer does not create an attorney/client relationship. These responses should be considered general legal education and are intended to provide general information about the question asked. Frequently, the question does not include important facts that, if known, could significantly change the answer. Information provided on this site should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed attorney that practices in your state. The law changes frequently and varies from state to state. If I refer to your state's laws, you should not rely on what I say; I just did a quick Internet search and found something that looked relevant that I hoped you would find helpful. You should verify and confirm any information provided with an attorney licensed in your state.
Agree that asking first is good policy, but I betcha you'll be heading to probate court to force production of the full document plus accountings.
This is not legal advice. I am not your lawyer. You are not my client. You cannot rely on my response to your question. My response to your question is probably worth exactly what you paid for it. You don't get to sue me for anything. If you'd like to sue me, well you have to hire me first. Here's how you can hire me! #1 Call: 1-888-463-2843 #2 Email: email@example.com #3 See me on TV! www.woodtv.com - go to the Ask the Expert tab! #4 Listen to my radio show (2 full hours every week!) www.woodradio.com - go to the podcast section.
I agree with the other two answers-so the answer to your question is-YES-it is typical.
The answer given does not imply that an attorney-client relationship has been established and your best course of action is to have legal representation in this matter.
Under the NC Uniform Trust Code, the Trustee should provide a copy of the Trust instrument upon the reasonable request of a qualified beneficiary. N.C. Gen. Stat. § 36C-8-813. If the Trustee does not produce a copy of the Trust instrument in response to such a request, a qualified beneficiary can initiate an action before the County Clerk to compel the Trustee to do so. N.C. Gen. Stat. § 36C-2-201 et. seq. You should contact a qualified Trust and Estates attorney who has experience in litigating Trust matters.
The response above is provided for informational purposes only, is not intended as legal advice, and does not create an attorney/client relationship. You should contact a qualified attorney in your area to discuss the matter.
Hope and pray that your sister-in-law has an attorney -- and ask that attorney for a copy. Usually it will be forthcoming as you have a clear right (unless the trust was changed).