Trusts can be extremely valuable tools when it comes to managing assets and controlling what happens to your wealth. While there are many legitimate ways to use trusts in tax and estate planning, some trustees engage in highly questionable transactions with the promise of reduction to personal expenses and certain taxes. However, these benefits are rarely delivered and instead are most commonly used to avoid income tax liabilities and hide assets from creditors, namely the IRS.
Recognizing and acting upon these breaches in fiduciary duties by the trustee as soon as possible is the most important way to minimalize the damage done. No matter how trustworthy the person or company managing the trust seems it is very important for the beneficiary to always keep track of their assets in the trust. The most common signs a breach of trust has happened include when a trusteeâ€™s personal finances are mingled with the trust they are managing (while this does happen often when a family member is given the responsibility there must be clear efforts to create a distinction between their funds and the estate), and when conflicts of interest cause the trustee to act in a way that hurts the trust. They must not profit, borrow, or benefit personally in any way unless it is clearly recognized and approved by the beneficiary.
If you believe that there has been an abuse of power and there have been unnecessary damages caused it is strongly recommended you consider speaking with a lawyer as soon as possible. An attorney can help gather evidence and take proper action so no further suffering happens.