Trusts & Estates Law/contesting a trust


My mother and my step father created a trust back in the 1990's in the state of Missouri. I have not seen the trust. My brother was the executor and has not followed up on anything. My mother passed away July 2013 and my step father is still living. My step fathers brother swooped in after my mothers passing and was made the POA for my step father. It is my understanding that the trust was set up as when both my mother and step father had passed, after all remaining debts were paid the remaining monies were to be divided equally between my mothers 6 children and my step fathers 2 children. My step fathers brother since being made POA has transferred the ownership of the home into one of my step fathers children name and the house has now been sold. My step father is being placed in a senior citizens establishment in the area where his brother resides (about 2 hours from the home that was sold). My step father is being directed on all actions by his brother and my mothers children are not being consulted in any matters. Do we, as my mothers children have any recourse to challenge the actions of my step father, his brother and or the trust itself?

Hi Leona - of course you have recourse.  From what little you have shared (I have not seen any documents).  The key is to get a copy of the trust.  From your email I assume you can't just ask for due to family tension.  However without documents no one can advise you.  You can demand a copy and if don't get it, inform your step father's brother that you intent to get a judge to order him to turn over all documents and financial records.  In your letter you may also want to remind him that he is PERSONALLY responsible for his actions and possibly your legal fees.  It is unfortunately common to see this but you must act quickly.  If I read this right you have legal right and they have a legal duty to inform you.

A stern letter may work, but if it doesn't be prepared to petition the probate court - meaning using an attorney.  Of course whether you hire an attorney has to do with how much money is involved.  

If I had the documents I could advise you better.

David Disraeli

Trusts & Estates Law

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


David Disraeli


I can answer general questions about estate planning and trusts. I can also answer questions about estate tax reduction and advanced charitable giving, family partnerships and asset protection. I may have already answered your question here: or here


I have worked for 24 years with clients and their attorneys to formulate estate plans to meet client goals. I have found many mistakes made by client attorneys and were able to have them corrected. I focus on making sure that beneficiaries are protected from current or future spouses and lawsuits so the wealth stays in the family. I have also published a book on Aging Parents which can be found on Amazon

President and founder of The Personal CFO Inc.


Certified Financial Planner 1994

©2016 All rights reserved.