What can be done if my uncle sold my grandmother’s farm and house but did not distribute the proceeds according to her Will?

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What can be done if my uncle sold my grandmother’s farm and house but did not distribute the proceeds according to her Will?

In the Will it states if the farm is sold it is to be split equally between the 3 children and he didn’t do this. He stated he had helped her fianacially through the years as well as helping others and he was keeping the money. Can he do this even though it is stated in the Will it is to be split equally if sold?

Asked on May 22, 2015 under Estate Planning, Pennsylvania

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Thr provisions of the Will are controlling.  Your uncle is required to comply with the provisions of the Will.

The remedy of the beneficiaries is to file a petition with the court seeking a constructive trust against your uncle.  A constructive trust will require your uncle to return the proceeds from the sale of your grandmother's farm to her estate for distribution to the three children. 

If your uncle has used the funds from sale of the farm to purchase other items/property, etc., the funds can be traced to those items and your uncle will be ordered to return those items or their value to your grandmother's estate for distribution to the three children.


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