How much time is enough time for the estate to settle?

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How much time is enough time for the estate to settle?

My uncle died 2 years ago and in his Will left a percentage of some oil/gas lease royalties to my siblings and I. His estate was fairly large and has taken a lot of time to get settled. We keep getting updates from the trustee but have not received any distributions from the Trust as of yet. The trustee gives one reason or another as to why the distributions aren’t being made and frankly we wonder if we should seek legal advise. We really don’t want to do.

Asked on July 14, 2014 under Estate Planning, Wyoming

Answers:

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

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your loss. If his estate was large and had a Trust created (I am assuming so by your using the term "trustee") then it could indeed take a while to sort out.  But you do have a right to know what is going on. If there was a Will and the Will was filed for probate then you can check the Probate Court file to see what is happening.  If the Will created the trust the trustee has a fiduciary responsibility to the beneficiaries to keep you informed and under the law, to file a yearly accounting.  So it may be in your best interest to speak with an attorney and agree to a flat fee for writing a few letter to the trustee to obtain the accounting and let him or her know that you are keeping an eye on things.  If things are going awry then you already have an attorney in place to bring an action against the Trustee for a Breach of Fiduciary duty.  Good luck.


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