What can I do if I’m a beneficiary under an irrevocable Trust but the Trustee will not communicate with me?

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What can I do if I’m a beneficiary under an irrevocable Trust but the Trustee will not communicate with me?

I haven’t spoken to a member of my family in over 40 years. They’ve all passed on except for my sister. Last year, I received in the mail, a very large packet from a local attorney naming me a beneficiary in an irrevocable Trust put forth by my late Aunt. I must say I was quite surprised but when I called and spoke to the lawyer all was in the so called up in up. I’d receive updates on the proceedings regarding the settlement of the Trust from the court and any questions I had were always fielded by the attorney’s handling the trust over the phone. I never a problem until recently. Suddenly they won’t respond to my questions.

Asked on July 21, 2014 under Estate Planning, New York

Answers:

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

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

It is a breach of fiduciary duty for the Trustee to ignore your inquiry in to what is happening on the distribution of the trust. I might speak with an attorney and ask then if they would write a letter to the Trustee and the attorney of the trust on a flat rate basis to help move things along.  And if there is an issue you will need to hire an attorney anyway so establishing a relationship early on may be a good idea. Good luck.


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