What can be done if the trustee to the Trust that I am a beneficiary to has not sold estate assets for the highest value offered?

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What can be done if the trustee to the Trust that I am a beneficiary to has not sold estate assets for the highest value offered?

She has sold them to her son for less than the true value and ignored higher bids on the property (house) and other large items. Shouldn’t she have to accept the highest bid?

Asked on December 25, 2015 under Estate Planning, Maine

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

A Trustee is legally obligated to use their best reasonable effort to meet the terms of the Trust as stated in the Will or Trust document. If a trustee doesn’t perform their duties as stated (i.e. if they act in a way that is disloyal or negligent), it constitutes an abuse of their position and they are considered to be in "breach of fiduciary duty". This is a legal abuse of authority and accordingly, the Trustee can be held personally liable for any losses to the estate that their actions may cause, as well as face removal from their position. 
In this instance, the Trustee's apparent acts of self-dealing and impartiality may well give rise to a legal claim. At this point you need to consult with an attorney who specializes in these type cases. They can go over all details of your situation and advise you further.


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