Life interest trust share change without consent or agreement

Hi there.

Can someone explain what process is needed to change the share a trust owns ?

I ask as my father owned 70% of a house. He died , left it to me and my kids but only when his then wife dies as the 70% he owned was handed to My stepmum (she owned 30%) has since moved on, sold it, and remarried and in new home

My aunt and step mum were trustees. Then my aunt retired and a solicitor took her role as trustee once step mum moved.

I tracked down the solicitor and requested info. What the trust owns , percentage etc

The solicitor replied saying my dad owned 50% of the house that was sold and is in life interest trust that my step mum has moved on with into new home.

However i have the declaration of trust showing my dad owned 70% of the house NOT 50%.

I know my aunt did 40k renovation ( new doors ) which was cosmetic. Not essential. And the house sold for 480 k.

I am confused how my stepmum gets 50% when i know they owned 30 % and my dad owned 70%

Is it possible that when my aunt was trustee they sinply agreed this as trustees and my dads share shrunk and they could do this without even telling me , the remaindermen?

If so. Could this be a breach of trust ? Is legal action even worth it here , would cost a fortune?

The difficulty may be because the Land Registry are only concerned with the Legal title, not the beneficial interest. Just because there may have been a Form A restriction to show that it was held as Tenants in Common, the presumption would be that it is 50/50 unless there was evidence to the contrary. However, whilst the ‘evidence to the contrary’ does exist (ie the Declaration of Trust), if it was not protected by a suitable restriction at the Land Registry the people dealing with the sale will know no different. However, your step-mum should have known as she signed the Declaration of Trust.

It is certainly worth bringing this up with the Solicitor Trustees because if he knew of the existence of the Declaration of Trust, then there may be an issue of negligence. Either way, it is worth bringing up with the trustees - especially if they knew the Declaration of Trust existed.

Thank you.

Its looking as if dad died…trustees (step mum and aunt) agreed share reduction, then aunt retired and handed the smaller trust to solicitor (new trustee).

Should the trustees have informed me they had reduced the trust amount (my fathers share in the house ) when they did did this ? Is a duty to inform part of the dutys of the trustees ?

So i have written to the new trustee (solicitor) as his letter to me states there are no trust accounts as no changes have been made to the trust, so i can only assume changes were made to what the trust holds before a trustee retired and he took over. I made this clear in the letter asked him as trustee to explain why my fathers share reduced before he was appointed.

Does this solicitor (new trustee ) now have a duty to look and see why the reduction happened and also resolve if its not legit / a case a misappropriation?

My gut feeling is trustees agreed to shrink dads share, with no actualy paperwork and they just thought it was ‘fair’ on my step mum…