Under a family trust, is a child still given money to use as they see fit?

My girlfriend is under a family Trust and is only given $200 a month. To my knowledge it is usually a flat amount. The grandparents that hand out the money are refusing to give her money for college although there is money in the Trust account.

Asked on July 6, 2016 under Estate Planning, Arizona


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The terms of the trust control what a child or beneficiary receives.  The terms of the trust will also control the rights and duties of the trustee.
So, in this situation, if the terms of the trust give her grandparents the right to withhold funds in certain situations.... or only give the grandparents the authority to distribute in certain situations... then the terms written in the trust will control.  If your girlfriend thinks that they are wrongfully withholding funds, she can petition the courts for relief including asking the court to appoint a new trustee or asking the court to dissolve the trust and simply distribute any remaining funds to her.

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