Can a trust be over-ridden

I am trustee on my deceased mother’s Trust and would like to sell the property
that my brother is living in with his significant other. My mother wanted my
brother to have a roof over his head he is in the last stages of ALS Lou
Gerig’s disease and upon his death the house was to be sold and the proceeds
given to the children, which I intend to do however, my brother’s significant
other has plans on selling the house and keeping the money. Does she have legal
recourse to do this? Also, when if and when I sell it will I as the trustee be
liable for any taxes. The house is the only asset left in the Trust.

Asked on October 7, 2017 under Estate Planning, California


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

So one of the issues - and a pretty big one - is what name or entity is on the deed to the property?  I am assuming that the deed was recorded with the name of the Trust on it.  And even if it was not, I am assuming that it is NOT in your brother's name but in your Mother's name.  You as Trustee have control of the Trust and the Trust assets.  Your Brother never owned the house he was only given a life estate which ends when he dies.  From what you have written, the significant other has no interest or power to sell.  But please take the legal documents to an attorney to read in person.  Forwarned is forarmed Good luck. 

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