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Mom lied, Daddy died. Mother, siblings & cousins withheld info, lied about abt Father's condition for 18+ mo. I rec'd email 3 days after Mom (Health Care Surrogate) & brother (Alternate Health Care Surrogate) pulled plug. Dad died on T-giving am 24 hrs after I arrived, starved 12 days.Stroke June 1, but was "really sick" prior. No one told me. Xmas call/cards '14. B-day cards to me June '15 said nothing. After he entered short term rehab for stroke, mom renovated the house, bought a new car, hired an interior decorator. Not exactly sure what she told everyone-something about my whereabouts unknown - despite regular greeting cards from me to many of them with same return address & regular email contact with sister in law. Am also named as Successor Personal Rep in their wills. Mom has habit of hanging up on me 30 yrs. Dad was "deaf." Sibs claim phone/email phobias, so I was sending notes & cards while still trying to have a child instead of being abused. Spouse & I treated like shunned people/Satan worshippers at funeral. Not a word of empathy. Acted like I was supposed to take care of them. Cousins said they are GLAD my father is dead & in heaven with his twin sister, their mother, who passed 5 yrs ago. Yay for me - I did not slap anyone or do anything but smile nod & look pretty. It was surreal & frightening when mom accused my husband, a licensed health professional of throwing her against wall in middle of hospice unit & eldest sister had the Director come in from day off to lecture us about hospice behavior. Due to location in FL we feared returning to hospice to sit with him overnight due to "cowards shoot to kill & claim fear for life" laws & mom's assault accusation so my dad died alone overnight. Mom claims there is a new attorney, new POA, & I failed my fiduciary duty because I did not put a piece of land in the trust. Wasn't my job until he was declared incompetent-she refuses to tell me when this happened.The family atty before hanging up on me said she was trying to replace me with my sister but he did not know how the docs would allow that. He did not respond to my email or attend funerals. She let slip he is still atty so doubt docs change. When I was waiting for my husband to return from his work here in NC - multiple days in another town, I asked Mom for her cell # & the new cells #s for my siblings. she said I could leave a message at the house if I needed anything. Claimed mobiles were banned by the facility so I could not talk to Dad - flat out lie. Told the nursing home to not tell me anything.I was dad's favorite merely because I was willing to listen to him & debate with him. Although no substance abuse or domestic violence is involved, the marriage of 50+ yrs was miserable on both sides. I learned I "was the cause" for being born "sick" Oct 2010. Jan 2015, I discovered video tape that revealed Mom made me sick on purpose. Mom also lied for 20 yrs about taking DES & never acknowledged 10 miscarriages as a result of birth defect-last 2012. Family is emotionally abusive with me as main target & dumping ground despite "golden child" accomplishments. I am physically disabled w/spinal injury as of early 2009. This whole thing is ugly & shameful - but not on my part. The family atty is assisting her in violating my father's wishes & has never given me one moment of guidance on what my duties as successor co-trustee are. Also have cousin who is atty who had major conflict of interest when he repped my dad in selling family business to a stranger after my father specifically asked me to leave major northern city to take over management of business & ease him into retirement. Destroyed both our careers/lives.Reason given was that I was a female. I later figured out my dad wanted my hubby to lay claim to my business plan so Dad could follow through on promise but Uncle kept throwing Old Testament confusion at him. Mother is trying to cash out annuities which Trust is supposed to be beneficiary of in order to buy a house near her wealthier friends that she simply cannot afford. She has no LTC. She will deplete all the assets & end up in nursing home of State of Florida taxpayer dime. She's 80. Her 90 yo sister is in better mental health but much worse physical health.
-I need someone to read the trust docs & will tell me what FL law is
-Tell me if Health Care Surrogate has legal obligation to tell Successor Co-trustee & if this relieves me of liability from siblings when they inherit nothing
-How to get injunction to stop Mom's dementia driven poor judgment, fiduciary failures, & hold them all responsible for emotional abuse of elderly & of disabled.
-Legal file at short term rehab & hospice was empty. Family atty refused to believe me or fax it over when I told him.
-How to find an atty licensed in NC & FL - have little trust for the north cent FL good old boy network who are after my father's property for development.
-Dad used selective deafness & memory his whole life to manipulate, Advanced Alzh dx was withheld

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Thank you Garden Artist. I appreciate your efforts to get this info to me & your answer.
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Enough, I've posted 2 messages and they just keep disappearing and won't post. This is my third and last try!

I did a quick check, and bear in mind that it's only a quick check. You might find this section of interest. Note that interpreting and/or relying on one section isn't necessarily conclusive because law is infamous for referrals to other sections which sometimes clarify, restrict and/or in some ways limit other provisions.

"(6) Except as otherwise provided in subsection (7), a cotrustee who does not join in an action of another cotrustee is not liable for the action."

Note that there are exceptions. However, see this:

"Except in cases of willful misconduct on the part of the trustee with the authority to direct or prevent actions of the trustees of which the excluded trustee has actual knowledge, an excluded trustee is not liable, individually or as a fiduciary, for any consequence that results from compliance with the exercise of the power, regardless of the information available to the excluded trustees. The excluded trustees are relieved of any obligation to review, inquire, investigate, or make recommendations or evaluations with respect to the exercise of the power. The trustee or trustees having the power to direct or prevent actions of the trustees shall be liable to the beneficiaries with respect to the exercise of the power as if the excluded trustees were not in office and shall have the exclusive obligation to account to and to defend any action brought by the beneficiaries with respect to the exercise of the power."

https://www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2011/736.0703

This turns on a couple of issues:

"Except in cases of willful misconduct on the part of the trustee with the authority to direct or prevent actions of the trustees of which the excluded trustee has actual knowledge, ..."

1. Misconduct on the part of the trustee with authority. I'm sure there is another section of the statute and possibly case law addressing definition as well as limitations of the trustee in authority. But that's an issue for more research.

2. The concept of actual knowledge - what constitutes it, when actual knowledge arises and occurs, and/or whether it's after the fact.

It might be that co-trustees with actual knowledge of fiduciary breach might be held responsible, but again the issue is as stated above. Did you have actual knowledge when the breaches were occurring?

As you can see, this gets to be very complicated.


This is kind of a wild suggestion, but it might be worth your effort. Do an online search to determine if there are any law schools in the area where your father lived, or in the same county. Contact the Dean's office or search online for estate planning attorneys who also teach trust law, then contact him/her/them and ask if they do private consulting.

Law professors aren't necessarily in the old boy network of practicing attorneys. You might also limit the family background issues and focus strictly on an interpretation of your own position.

Good luck on whatever choice of action you choose.
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Pamlegma - Now just go away please. I failed at nothing. I have been to Florida 3 times for a total of 25 days since I was informed they pulled the plug - 2 months ago. I gave the eulogy at the family internment. I am trying to find an attorney who is not afraid of the guy who drew up the docs in the first place. Of course there are items not placed in the trust which will go through probate & be public. It is the assets held in the trust that are not publically probated. Just go away. Please. You are mean-spirited & I have endured enough of that already. Just go away.
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Pamslegma - I see that you rethought your answer in the non-public forum. Thank you for the hug & for being kinder. I am still shell shocked over the events since November. And the little I have been able to learn about the months leading up to it. My father was psychologically tortured for months & months being told I was unreachable (or didn't want to see him?) by a bunch of people who claim to love him so much. And who also loudly proclaim their "salvation" etc. He hung on starving for 12 days until after I got there & then tried to sit up in bed and talk when I'd been told he was brain dead. He had not responded to anyone at all from the time he became "unresponsive" (at 110 lbs) until I arrived. This made some people angry - they all wanted to be his favorite. I never worked at or tried to be his favorite, he picked me - it was a burden in many ways but I do love him very much & am in shock that we were deliberately denied the ability to say final goodbyes. These were acts of cruelty. Pure cruelty - I think to target me but they hurt him much more. The trust is not going to probate. Trusts avoid probate which is the reason for them - to help the wealthy keep what they have secret from the public as it passes down through generations. My grandfather was smart enough to leave the trust that benefited us in the hands of professional trustees - as it should be. I was named successor co-trustee despite having told them over & over to name professionals. That is was not wise nor fair to put Trustee duties on a grieving person. Sad to say, Mother is not grieving. She is free at last. She was miserable for over 50 years - not due to any "normal type of problem like domestic abuse, substances, adultery, none of that - she was miserable because my father's twin sister & her family came before her & us in his emotional life. Then he placed me in a position of confidant from a very early age - a place she should have held as his wife - and a place I tried to extract myself from over & over by urging him to embrace my mother & siblings unconditionally. And the response was, time & again, but you are the only one I can talk to. But even I came far behind his twin & her husband who sucked him into a form of extreme cult-like religion when I left for school. I will accept your advice to write it up & send it to whomever I can find at a state level to ensure that I am not held responsible by the current & following generations who are named as beneficiaries to the trust. I am going to see about removing this whole thread since it is to confusing. Sorry for the bother.
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Florida law 736.05055 Notice of trust.—
(1) Upon the death of a settlor of a trust described in s. 733.707(3), the trustee must file a notice of trust with the court of the county of the settlor’s domicile and the court having jurisdiction of the settlor’s estate.

My guess is that since you have failed to notify the probate court of a trustee's death, the Executor is now invading the trust legally, claiming you are nowhere to be found. Now please go get a Florida attorney.
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"She has CO-fiduciary duties WITH me to administer the trust under the laws of Florida. Co-trustee sucks bc unless I get a legal finding that I am NOT responsible, due to her lies, for her wasting the funds - I CAN BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR HER ACTION$ that deplete the trust & "cheat" my sibs out of what was intended for them & their children. "

Doodles, read the trust language appointing co-trustees very carefully. Does it provide that either may act on his/her own, and is there concomitant language elsewhere in the responsibility sections that address joint or individual responsibility?

I suspect there might be some exculpatory type language providing that you're not responsible for the actions of a co-trustee.
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I am not trying to collect anything Pamslegma. I am trying to protect my OWN assets from litigation. I am seeking guidance from people who might have had similar experience or knowledge with FL TRUSTS & CO-TRUSTEES & can recommend attorneys. You obviously have no idea what a trust is or how it functions. And I am certainly not seeking nasty comments off topic - Least of all from a troll like you who projects your own vengeful drive onto someone who is grieving & has no concept of what a "trust fund baby is". For future reference - Trusts allow people with assets (ie, wealthier folks) to name them to the trust making the trust the owner. Trusts do not go through probate and are not made public like wills are. Trusts are not probated like wills. Trusts shield assets from estate taxes. Trusts are managed by - wait for it - TRUSTEES - not executors. Co-trustees are 2 or more Trustees who have fiduciary (look it up) duties and responsibilities. When co-trustees deplete trust funds instead of acting to preserve & grow the assets for the benefit of all the named beneficiaries, the beneficiaries of the trust can hold ALL trustees responsible. Obviously, my siblings & the following generations are beneficiaries of the trust. This means that 1 co-trustee cannot go cash everything and then throw it on a bed in Vegas & say mine all mine - even if that person is the widow. Now, go away. Your comments are based on no knowledge of trusts & are insulting.
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Sorry, you do not go collect anything. The Executor is in charge. Your need for revenge is blocking your common sense. Calm down. Estates have to be probated, even in Florida. Your attorney of choice has to be licensed in Florida. I don't care how famous he is in Boston or anywhere else and neither does the Judge in Probate court.
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Hi - it is not "her" money. It is in a State of Florida Family Revocable Trust. She has CO-fiduciary duties WITH me to administer the trust under the laws of Florida. Co-trustee sucks bc unless I get a legal finding that I am NOT responsible, due to her lies, for her wasting the funds - I CAN BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR HER ACTION$ that deplete the trust & "cheat" my sibs out of what was intended for them & their children. The moment he became unable to make decisions, I became the CO-trustee with Mother. However, she lied & continues to lie. I believe she has spent over a half million at this point. He was a workaholic who got up at 4am & was in bed no later than 8pm. It was normal to get all info from mother. If he answered phone, she took it right away for 33 years since I left home because he had impaired hearing from hunting. I did not say someone said he was deaf - I said he USED SELECTIVE HEARING & MEMORY his whole life. My sister & I would test it every now and then by whispering. Sometimes it was amazing what a supposedly hearing impaired man could hear. And what he couldn't hear. It was a game of manipulation with him. Without being informed he'd been diagnosed with dementia - not able to make decisions, use judgment, think in abstract terms, his letters to me remained the same for the most part obviously written when he was lucid - I had no way of knowing upon what date I became HIS representative in the trust. Trust laws protect assets from probate and public knowledge AND from spendthrifts. Again, not "her" money. The trust's money. There a re tax advantages. The state does not allow an estate to avoid taxes & then let a co-trustee or even a single trustee spend on whatever they like. She cannot do whatever she wants like a woman whose husband merely left a will. Different animal altogether. Upper middle class white people + Southern + extreme religious = UGLY
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Thank you, yes.
#1. - MOST IMPT - Need someone with legal knowledge of Rev Trust FL to read docs with all names redacted & advise if I am at risk of liability from sibs.
If I am NOT at risk, I might just go collect what is mine & shake the dust from my garments as I leave that god-forsaken town. First step is FAR from litigation - I need legal interpretation. And, can the docs be changed once he was "out"?
2. If I am at risk - then I want to get onto record (I have all incoming and outgoing phone calls - Old Daytimers, Palm Pilots, 6 computers/laptops, copies of letters ,cards sent and received, emails discussing my father asking for me prior to his heart stopping the first time,) that I acted in good faith throughout & was lied to with malice and forethought as was he.
3. I want injunction against mother from wasting the estate. Father had specifically named me because he knew I was only one who gave a darn to care for others & keep integrity. I'll make sure mother is cared for but she is NOT going to be a burden on FL taxpayers. How do I get her Baker Acted?
4. If I AM AT RISK from sibs - I'd prefer a litigator, someone who was not educated in Florida at all. Or, someone who knows the players and says f them. Can't be bought. Not trying to build houses coast to coast. Certain family has deep ties with certain development, political, religious people. Perfect would be Boston, NY, DC educated atty. I found a female Boston estate atty in Jax but she had conflict with one of the people involved who is related to a former gov & she does not litigate.
5. Does it make sense to go ahead & file complaint of Elder Abuse with State to investigate? I've heard of people not calling a family member who is addict or criminal or really truly MIA etc (not that it's right to do that) but I and spouse are only actual humans with hearts in the bunch. The rest are heavily into being on "winning" side, not the side of right v wrong. My father wanted to see me & was repeatedly denied. After I learned a female cousin was regularly visiting & never said a word, I asked her to take cell phone in & allow me to speak to him. Then she photographed him & was going to text it to me so I'd know "WHAT" I was speaking to. I said "no, no, no ,no" choking with shock that this self proclaimed Christian & seemingly kindest of the lot of them would be so very ghoulish. I know my father & he was not a WHAT. This cousin & another went silent over a year ago. No calls or emails. This was a conspiracy to keep my father & me apart. No diagnosis or treatment for evil. And I never even believed in true evil before this past 3 months!
PS - Does it have to stay within the FL State District Court covering the county in which he lived?
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POA ends at death. So the Executor is now in charge.
A successor personal rep has no function unless the primary dies.
HCP is bound to confidentiality; they tell nothing to anyone.
Mom can do whatever she wants with her money.
I seriously doubt if you are still a successor co-trustee. C'est La Vie.
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Holy moly. This is so incredibly complex. There are a lot of people throwing around accusations. There are a lot of people saying things. In many cases the "someone told me he was deaf" type scenarios will not hold up in court. You need an elder care and estate attorney to sort this out.

Angel
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😳
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You will need to contact an Elder Law attorney, as this is way too complex.
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