Aren’t there criminal penalties for defrauding beneficiaries out of their inheritance?

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Aren’t there criminal penalties for defrauding beneficiaries out of their inheritance?

After my mother died my sister claimed to be the estate trustee and that I had to turn my share of my mother’s assets over to her to be put into a trust account under her control. After turning the money over to her I found out that this money is not part of the trust. She now refuses to return my assets and claims that I voluntarily gave her the money. How can I get my money back?

Asked on October 18, 2012 under Estate Planning, California

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The best way to try and get monies that are due you that you gave to your sister is for you to consult with a civil litigation attorney to make a demand for you for what is owed. If your sister refuses to turn over what is owed you that she failed to place in trust as represented, then it appears that your option if you want your money is litigation.

Fraud as you have written could very well be the basis for a criminal filing in addition to a civil filing.


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