Trust Case Summary:
As a result of the intervention of SBEMP, a recent court decision ordered a co-trustee in violation of fiduciary duties be removed from his position as Co-Trustee of the Trust.
BN’s brother died, leaving a trust naming her and his roommate (with whom he did not have a legal relationship) as Co-Trustees; and granting the roommate, WM, a life estate to remain in the house.
After several violations of fiduciary duties, BN petitioned to remove WM as a co-trustee.
The fiduciary violations included; but were not limited to: falsifying the decedent’s death certificate, with the intention of divesting the Trust beneficiaries from their inheritances; preventing BN from administering the Trust and performing her trustee duties (e.g., accessing the Trust-owned real property and documentation relating to the other trust assets and its obligations); and engaging in a campaign of hostility toward BN and the other Trust beneficiaries.
WM admitted he falsified his relationship on the death certificate and interfered with administration by not giving BN access to the information.
The court ordered that WM provide BM with all information in his control necessary to determine the assets of the Trust, income of the Trust, expenditures of the Trust, and expenses of the Trust for proper accounting.
The court ordered WM to allow access to the property sufficient to allow BN, or her designated agent, to photograph or video record the property and all of its contents for the purpose of identifying and marshaling the assets of the Trust and to allow for a proper appraisal and accounting.
The court also removed WM as Co-Trustee of the Trust and BN is appointed sole Trustee.
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