As a beneficiary, you hope to have the utmost confidence in the person who is in charge of administering the trust. Yet unfortunately, this is not always the case. Some trustees do in fact mismanage or embezzle trust assets, to the detriment of the rightful beneficiaries of the trust. There are actions that beneficiaries can take when mismanagement or embezzlement of trust assets is suspected. The following is an overview of one such option.
3 Steps for Dealing With Trustee Mismanagement of Trust Assets
If you suspect that the trustee of a trust is not managing trust assets properly, you may opt to file a petition to obtain court involvement. Filing the petition may play out as outlined below:
- File a petition requesting that the trustee render an accounting of the trust assets.
- If the San Diego court approves your petition, the trustee will be required to provide a detailed breakdown of the money and assets of the trust. This includes income and expenses of the trust.
- If the accounting reveals trustee mismanagement or embezzlement of trust assets, you may pursue a civil claim for conversion. This is the civil court version of a criminal charge for theft.
Filing a petition may not always be your only or best option. Our article, “The California Trustee Mismanaged the Estate – What Should I Do?,” addresses this important question and outlines the possible next steps for a beneficiary. It is also important to meet with an experienced attorney who can help review your options with you. In conclusion, the actions that you take may impact your ability to protect the trust’s assets.
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