A teenager has received widespread support and advice after revealing his mom and stepdad spent part of his inheritance on their new house.
The 17-year-old posted the story to Reddit, under username Reddit_randouser, as he explained his dad passed away two years ago.
He was under the impression his father had left him some inheritance, which he’d be eligible to receive once he turned 18.
Posting on the site’s Am I The A**hole forum, he said: “I’m also getting survivors benefits that my mom uses for me when I need things so is not like she used this inheritance for me.”
His suspicions were aroused when his mom and stepdad bought a house after previously living in an apartment.
The teen wrote: “They never even had enough to go for a vacation or something but all of a sudden they had for a large house out of nowhere. My mom looked guilty about it until she finally admitted they used some of what my dad left me to buy the house. I lost my s***.
“They tried to justify that it was for me too and I asked them does that mean they’re moving out when I’m 18 an the house is gone be in my name? And they’re like no. That’s what I thought. Supposedly the house was for my but max time I would’ve lived there was a few months.”
He claimed there was still some money left over for him to go to a “cheap college,” but he was incredibly hurt his inheritance had been used without his consent.
“…Still can’t believe they used my money for something on themselves. That amount could’ve helped me get my own damm house. Also think is funny since my stepdad didn’t like my dad because since I was spending more time with him that meant my mom had to pay a little in child support,” he continued.
The issue boiled over when his step-dad’s family visited, and the teen was quickly making breakfast before having to dash to work.
He fumed: “I made myself eggs in a hurry before I left my stepdad asked how come there wasn’t more for his family. And told him it’s because I’m already leaving for work there wasn’t gonna be time to make something for everyone.”
He claimed his stepdad told him “don’t talk to me like that in my house,” to which he replied: “I said loudly ‘actually it’s my house since you paid for it with my money‘ and don’t forget they stole from me.”
The extended family overheard, which had caused friction in the house. But the teen stood his ground, as he claimed he had nothing to apologize for.
“My mom is expecting me to apologize for embarrassing him in front of his whole family because after I left they all had s*** to say about it,” he wrote.
The post, shared on Monday, has racked up more than 15,000 upvotes as people slammed the mom and stepdad for taking the cash.
Numerous people suggested he seek legal advice, but Changeneverhappens wrote: “It could also be completely legal—part of taking care of a child is providing housing. OP def needs to speak with an estate attorney.”
Skittlzz_23 said: “Exactly, his mother and step dad knew they only had a few months left if they wanted to use the money, seems like they made sure to buy the house before they had to hand over the $$ and lose access to it. This was a calculated move.”
Curious-One4595 commented: “A court will order them to transfer title of the house to him. He needs to talk to an attorney right away.”
Augustus87_hc pointed out: “Unfortunately, he’s probably stuck with a significant loss. If his mom and step dad are forced to sell the house, there will be fees and taxes taken out.”
Dashcamkitty thought: “His mother is the biggest AH of the two. Imagine betraying your child like that.”
Dinahdog advised: “Start with the lawyer who structured the payment to you. If your mom was entrusted to keep funds for a minor, she could be seriously liable for fraud or theft or embezzling or something. What she did is totally illegal. You could also contact the bank or financial institution that released the funds to mom. Or a lawyer can. This is so not right. NTA.”
In response to the numerous calls for him to seek legal advice, the teen said in a comment: “I didn’t think something about that could be done right now that I’m still not 18 yet but I’m gonna find out. Everything was supposed to go to me after I turned 18 that’s what they explained to me.”
The chart below, provided by Statista, shows wealth transfers.
As numerous Redditors pointed out, there is a legal route the teenager needs to follow, but laws vary from country to country, and state to state.
The law offices of Albert Goodwin in New York shared information about where to start when pursuing action.
They advised starting off by gathering key paperwork, including: “Tax records to see whether title to property has changed via deed or sale, and whether any liens have been placed on real property.
“Bank, brokerage, and retirement account statements to see if there have been unusually large withdrawals.
“Changes in beneficiary designations on insurance policies, annuities, brokerage accounts, and retirement accounts, to see if there are recent replacements made.
“Bank accounts to see if another joint account holder has been added.
“Receipts and invoices for legal expenses, notary fees, or other estate planning services.
“Federal and state tax returns to determine if there had been gifts to others.”