What can I do if my mother was the custodian of a Trust account that was in name and she drained the account?

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What can I do if my mother was the custodian of a Trust account that was in name and she drained the account?

This was not a joint account; it was made when I was a minor.My grandmother deposited money in it for me over the past 10 years. However, over the past 2 1/2 years my mother withdrew $35,000 from this account unauthorized. She recently moved to South Africa and refuses to give my money back to me. I am now 22 years old and have control of the account but she drained it before I gained control.

Asked on June 11, 2013 under Estate Planning, Arizona

Answers:

Anne Brady / Law Office of Anne Brady

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You can get a lawsuit ready to file against her for breach of fiduciary duty and if and when she ever returns to this country, you can file it and serve her with it.  However, so long as she stays in South Africa there is little you can do to her.  You can report her to the police.  The U.S. does have an extradition treaty with South Africa.  However, I doubt any prosecutor would want to invoke it over a theft of $35,000.


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