Low income Legal representation for Trustee Fraud?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Low income Legal representation for Trustee Fraud?

My cousin lives on govt assistance so her inheritance went into a trust. We
believe that the trustee has taken funds possibly all from her trust for
himself. Are there any affordable options so that she can get assistance to
get this into probate court? Sacramento, CA
Thank you

Asked on March 7, 2017 under Estate Planning, California


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

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Your cousin may want to try Legal Aid or possibly legal clinics at a law school.
The remedy is to file a lawsuit for conversion (theft in a civil case) in probate court seeking a constructive trust against the trustee.  A constructive trust will require the trustee to return the funds to the Trust.  If the trustee has made any acquisitions with the stolen funds, the constructive trust can trace the funds to those acquisitions and those items or their value can be returned to the Trust.
The lawsuit should also seek to have the trustee removed and a successor trustee appointed.

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