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If we succeed in proving that there was undue influence in a case, can we go after my siblings for damages, attorney fees, etc?

Los Angeles, CA |

My sister and brother sequestered my 91 year old mother, found an unscrupulous attorney and changed her will favoring the two of them. My sister made herself the trustee of my mother's estate and used the trust as her legal fund to fight the three other siblings in order to gain control of all my mother's money and all her possessions which they have all but sold. We have had an attorney on this for years but she has not filed to revoke the bogus trust or be direct in court, to the judge about what has gone on for more then three years now. I believe this is a clear case of undue influence. It fits every noted description. Should we fire our attorney and seek another? We have been paying fees out of pocket, while my sister and brother are using the estate money to fight us in court.

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Attorney answers 3


Probably. If you are years into this with no progress, no discovery and no petition for removal, you might need an attorney with more litigation experience.


As far as challenging the trust, there is a good chance the statute of limitation has run on that. That said, financial elder abuse statute is four years. That might be explored. While I really dont like to advocate malpractice actions, you may also have to consider that option if the facts are as good as you say in your favor.

Regardless, you need to act to protect your rights no matter what that means you need to do. Dont sit back and wait for time to run.

The general advice above does not constitute an attorney-client relationship: you haven't hired me or my firm or given me confidential information by posting on this public forum, and my answer on this public forum does not constitute attorney-client advice. IRS Circular 230 Disclosure: In order to comply with requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Service, we inform you that any U.S. tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (i) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (ii) promoting, marketing, or recommending to another party any transaction or matter addressed herein. While I am licensed to practice in New York and California, I do not actively practice in New York. Regardless, nothing said should be deemed an opinion of law of any state. All readers need to do their own research or pay an attorney for a legal opinion if one is necessary or desired.


Find an attorney experienced in these matters and request a consultation. Second opinions can be valuable.
As an aside I have never seen an undue influence case litigated successfully without engaging experts like a forensic psychiatrist.

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